(NOTE: The GCI offices will be closed until January 2nd.)
Dear Prayer Warriors,
I want to take this moment to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a blessed New Years. It is very humbling that you would take the time to read my devotional thoughts, and I do not take your considerations lightly. I pray that God has used them to bless you and to draw you nearer to Himself and His ministry.
Today we are having â€śFirst Christmasâ€ť at the Mahon home. My son Sam and his family are traveling to Minnesota to be with the in-laws. (We have them every other year and this is the away year.) As a result, they came over today to have Christmas with us, Megan and my daughter Lizzyâ€™s family â€“ the Izaguirres. What a joy the time was together. It was interrupted, though, by an announcement from Dr. Mukolwe that water was dripping from the ceiling in his room. (Dr. Mukolwe is the national director of the Navigator ministry in the country of Kenya. We have known each other since the years we spent together at Oklahoma State University where he was involved in our ministry as an international student.) Dr. Mukolwe and his family are visiting us this week and staying in the upstairs bedrooms. We have a full house, and it is such a joy, but no water is a big problem.
A quick call to the plumber produced â€śTroy." He isolated and solved the problem in a couple of hours. I could not help but wonder why the Lord would bring this about at such an unusual time. As is my habit, I gave Troy a coke, a gospel of John and a gospel tract â€“ which we keep in a basket by the door. In addition, during the Christmas season we keep the â€śTrue Meaning of Christmasâ€ť by Billy Graham and candy canes with the story of the candy cane attached, and he got one of each of these items as well. As I walked Troy out to his truck, I said to him, â€śYou know Troy, many times the Lord will bring about a situation like this because a repairman has a special need. Is there anything I can pray with you about?â€ť Troy shared with me that he was an active Christian but that his father had gone to be with the Lord this fall, and he was missing him. He shared that it meant a lot to be invited in, to sit at our table, to be given Christmas cookies and coffee and to see our family celebrating Christmas. I took Troyâ€™s hand in mine and prayed that the Lord would be his Comforter during this time. With a tear in his eye Troy thanked me, and I saw him on his way.
As I was waving goodbye to Troy, a convoy of city trucks came down our street. A nervous city supervisor approached me and explained that they had to trim trees away from the power lines on our street and could we move our cars. I not only re-assured him that I appreciated his willingness to work on the Friday before Christmas but gave him a coke, a gospel of John, the Billy Grahamâ€™s true meaning of Christmas and the candy cane with the tradition of the candy cane attached. He thanked me profusely; then I took his hand and prayed for his safety while he worked on trees around the power lines. Soon there were gathered in my front lawn seven other workers who wanted prayer for safety and the gospel materials we had given the supervisor (and, of course, the cokes).
Tonight we will have our annual evangelistic Christmas party with friends, family and neighbors. All will hear the gospel and leave with the gifts which we give to everyone who crosses the threshold of our home.
Lorne Sanny (former Director of the Navigators, now with the Lord) once told me, â€śJohn, the greatest ability God desires in a man is availability.â€ť I share these events of today to encourage you that opportunities to share with those around us the true meaning of Christmas abound if we are only available.
When I pray for Godâ€™s blessing for you this Christmas, I mean that you would experience the greatest blessing of all â€“ the supreme and unimaginable privilege of sharing the gospel with a non-believer and inviting him to â€śpray now to receive Christ as your personal Lord and Savior.â€ť
May God bless you this Christmas, and through you, may at least one person discover the true meaning of Christmas which is only possible by being born again.
By His mercy, II Corinthians 4:1 Rev. John S. Mahon Director â€“ Grace Community Int.