Sunday, December 21, 2014

A Step in the Write Direction--December 22, 2014--The Sound of Good News

 A Step in the Write Direction
December 22, 2014

Update: My prayer is that each of you has a good Christmas Day, and that no one will be alone. If you are, think of someone you can invite, or volunteer at a local Salvation Army dinner or another place serving meals. I’m thankful to live in a country where we can freely celebrate Christmas, even if some want to call it by another name. I’m thankful my husband is still with us after four hospital stays this year and for our children and granddaughters (and yes, my son-in-law). Even though it’s not Thanksgiving week, why not make a list of what you’re thankful for this Christmas and share it with your family.

Thought for Today:
One day, a rich dad took his son on a trip. Wanting to show him how needy someone can be, they spent time on the farm of a poor family. On the way home, Dad asked, "What did you learn today?"
The son replied, "We have one dog, they have four; we have a pool, they have rivers, we have lanterns at night, they have stars; we buy foods, they grow theirs; we have walls to protect us, they have friends; we have encyclopedias, they have a Bible." Then he added, "Thanks, Dad, for showing me how poor we are."
Song for Today:
Thou didst leave Thy throne and Thy kingly crown,
When Thou camest to earth for me;
But in Bethlehem’s home there was found no room
For Thy holy Nativity.
O come to my heart, Lord Jesus;
There is room in my heart for Thee.
            —Emily E.S. Elliott, “Thou Didst Leave Thy Throne”

Laugh for Today:
How Many Christians Does It Take to Change a Light Bulb?
(tongue in cheek, of course)

Charismatics: One. Their hands are already in the air.
Pentecostals: Ten. One to change the bulb and nine to pray against the spirit of darkness.
Presbyterians: None. Lights will go off and on at predestined times.
Roman Catholics: None. Candles only.
Baptists: At least fifteen. One to change the light bulb, and three committees to approve the
    change and decide who brings the potato salad and fried chicken.
Mormons: One, and four wives to tell him how to do it.
Methodists: Undetermined. Whether your light is bright, dull, or completely out, you are            
   loved. You can be a light bulb, turnip bulb, or tulip bulb. Bring a bulb of your choice to
   the Sunday lighting service and a covered dish to pass.
Nazarenes: Six. One woman to replace the bulb while five men review church lighting
Lutherans: None. Lutherans don’t believe in change.
Amish: What’s a light bulb?

Writers’ Tips: (Next week I’ll return to actual writers’ tips.)

An Unexpected Sound

Suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God (Luke 2:13).

A local discount store was closing its doors for good at  midnight on Christmas Eve. My husband and I—barely making it on his pastor’s small salary—thought it would be a good chance to shop for our three children 3, 2, and 11 months. The store was nearby, the children were asleep, so we left them with my two teen-age nephews.

When we returned we found the two boys huddled together as close as they could get on our sofa. “What’s wrong?” I asked.

“There’s…there’s…someone in the attic,” one replied shakily.

“Yeah,” the younger one added, his face ashen. “We can hear them pounding up there.”

We listened. Bang…bang…bang…the sound reverberated throughout the living room. We laughed, and took the two shaking boys outside where they saw the wind blowing the “parsonage” sign against the front of the house.

Unexpected sounds can be scary at night—but not when they signal good news. It was night when the angels appeared to the shepherds, singing, "Glory to God in the highest.”

When a sound awakens you in the night, don’t be afraid. It may be an angel bringing good news.

Lord, thank You for the good news You gave the shepherds in the middle of the night—and to me today—peace on earth! May it begin with peace in my heart.

 Have a good week spreading the
gospel through the printed page.

Donna Clark Goodrich
"A Step in the Write Direction--the Complete How-to Guide for Christian Writers"

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