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Friday, December 26, 2008

The Day after Christmas

Although the church in Penrose did not have a Christmas Eve service, I conducted one. The pastor of Calvary Bible Church in Colorado Springs called me December 23 from Room 508 of Penrose Main Hospital and asked me to conduct Calvary’s Christmas Eve service. He had been admitted to the hospital because he was experiencing severe abdominal pain.

The Christmas Eve service featured excellent vocal and instrumental music, carol singing, a brief message from me, and candle lighting. Refreshments after the service offered the congregation the opportunity to fellowship and wish one another a merry Christmas.

The pastor was discharged from the hospital late Christmas afternoon and is taking initial recovery steps. I am glad I was able to pinch hit for him.

Gloria and I spent Christmas Day at Sherrie and Jim’s home in Highlands Ranch, Colorado. The celebration included our daughters Sherrie and Heather, son Brian, sons-in-law Jim and Brad, granddaughters Jessica and Kayla, and for a while, Sherrie’s next-door neighbor Ingrid. The family dogs attended too. Count them! Guido, Susie, Maggie, Ben, Molly, Rosie, Sadie, Duncan, and Rocky. That’s nine; and Sherrie and Jim also have several birds. The whole event resembled Christmas aboard Noah’s ark; and we may have had as much food on board.

I didn’t step on the scales today. I plan to wait until Sunday to weigh in. Today, I will have lunch with Norm, a former treasurer for a church I served as interim pastor a few years ago. We will chow down at a buffet!!!

So it is the day after Christmas, and all through our house not a creature is hungry,
Not even our dogs.
Our presents are unwrapped and plainly in sight.
We plan to put them away if it takes us ‘til night.

On this day after Christmas we reflect on family mirth,
But cherish most highly our Savior’s humble birth,
Sinless life, love, and redeeming grace—
Good news to share with the whole human race!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!

“Then the angel said unto them [the shepherds], ‘Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior who is Christ the Lord’” (Luke 2:10, 11).

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


What a surprise: my Houghton College roommate from 1958 found me on Facebook and reconnected. Ernie and I had lost track of each other about 40 years ago, so we have lots of updating to do. Fortunately, we may meet again if he and his wife come to Colorado from Rhode Island next year.

As college students, Ernie and I worked for about 80 cents an hour hauling rocks from a creek and carrying them up a ladder for our boss to place on our dorm’s exterior. After graduating from Houghton, Ernie studied at Moody Bible Institute. I had graduated from Moody before attending Houghton. Later, Ernie became a high school science teacher, and I became a pastor/editor.

Friendship is worth reestablishing at any age, but doing so becomes especially meaningful when friends are in life’s golden years. So many of my friends have already passed into eternity. Of course, Christian friendship extends into eternity. Someday, in Heaven, Christian friends will enjoy a lasting bond of fellowship. Perhaps we will share our stories and discuss God’s goodness—and we will have plenty of time to do so. Best of all, we will never have to say good-by.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Chasing Rabbits

A pedestrian path winds its way through a small park in our neighborhood and continues between two rows of nicely landscaped back yards. At least once a day I walk our dogs along this path.

Rabbits frequent the area the path cuts through. They often hop around shrubs, across lawns, and down the pedestrian path. Even when I don’t see a rabbit, I know one is nearby. The dogs alert me to its presence by yanking their leashes vigorously and picking up their pace like horses heading to the stable for a good meal.

Our dogs don’t realize they can’t catch a rabbit. Rabbits run faster than little dogs, and they can hide in thick brush. I don’t think our dogs will ever understand that chasing rabbits is a waste of time and energy.

Some Christians chase rabbits. Instead of studying the Bible to learn about God and His will for their lives, they prefer to follow rabbit trails. They want to know what each toenail on Nebuchadnezzar’s image represents. They want to know what 666 stands for and what action they should take if they receive a license plate or credit card that includes 666.

The apostle Paul advised Titus, a young pastor at Crete, to avoid foolish controversies. He dubbed them “unprofitable and useless” (Titus 3:9).

Doesn’t it make sense to devote our time and energy to Bible truths that keep our Christian life focused, productive, and enjoyable? Let’s keep a tight leash on all who try to lure us into the habit of chasing rabbits!

© Jim Dyet