"While rearing five young children and in hot pursuit of honoring Jesus on His 'birthday,' I pleaded with Him to help our family realize the true meaning of Christmas," shared Pam Enderby who works in the Come to the Fire office. While asking for help, the Holy Spirit gave her the following creative ideas.
"Christmas week our family chooses one evening after dinner to go on our annual 'Christmas lighting' adventure. Sometimes we travel many miles before determining who has the best holiday decorations. Finally, everyone picks their favorite, casts their vote and the majority wins. The children discuss who will present the grand prize - a box of assorted chocolates.
"The porch light turns on, a door opens and then a moment of explanation. 'Every year our family chooses a home that we think has the prettiest Christmas decorations. Your home has won!' While the rest of us wait in the van with our windows rolled down, we offer friendly waves.
"It amazes me how a box of chocolates with a Scripture note attached evokes such huge smiles and so many 'thank yous.'
"Visiting nursing home residents also creates heart transformations. For example, Ben's squeezing our hand tightly while thanking us with tear-filled eyes for visiting him, melts our hearts.
"One year we invited Julie, a homeless young woman, to join our family festivities. She enjoyed helping me prepare Christmas dinner, attended Christmas Eve service with us, and opened gifts with us. Sometimes giving is about how we love just one person.
"Our favorite memories revolve around anonymously giving food to needy families. Now our adult children still enthusiastically anticipate this seasonal outreach.
"By spending ourselves for the glory of God freely, generously, and sometimes sacrificially, we leave a legacy of love. With Christmas right around the corner, once again, I'm asking Jesus to guide our family to bring glory to His name.
"Freely you have received; freely give" (Matthew 10:8).