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"Let us reason together…" Isaiah 1:18

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Home for Christmas?

I am wondering if there is a downside to the realities of the delightful Christmas song, “I’ll Be Home For Christmas?” Surely, the upside far outweighs the downside, yet the downside deserves some attention.

I’m just wondering if it is really all that great for a new widow to be home for Christmas? Is the newly divorced man all that excited to be home for Christmas?

What are the unique challenges a military couple faces when one spouse returns from the war after being gone and in battle for over a year? How does a five year old boy feel when he hasn’t seen dad for over a year and now dad is back in the home? Maybe dad left a gentle, energetic, joyful soul and has returned battle weary and struggling with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder? A single soldier returns “Home” only to find that she was barely missed, everything has changed, and she doesn’t feel that she fits in the ‘old gang’ anymore.

I have a couple of suggestions………

1. How about offering to baby sit the children so mom and dad can have a weekend away?

2. Figure out ways to make home for Christmas feel like a genuine “HOME” this Christmas.

3. Say to one of your “home for Christmas buddies,” “What is the best thing that has happened to you since you have been gone? What is one of the most difficult things?

4. “Here’s $20. Have some fun on my dime.”

5. “Our Christmas Celebration Table wouldn’t be complete without you. Are you willing to come over and celebrate with us?

6. “We have some extra airline miles. May I fly your best friend/parents/old football buddy/etc. up for a week?

My home can be your home this Christmas.

Posted on 12th December 2007 in Christmas, MCA Family, Musings, Uncategorized  •  Comments are off for this post
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How to Reduce Christmas spending by 70%

Reducing Christmas spending is a sure way to get the ire of the retail wranglers, the debt deliverers, the corporate conquerors, the spending spinsters, the credit card crooners, and the overspending gurus.

What would the effect be of 70% less resources consumed? The positive exponential re-enforcing loop could be staggering.

“All right Redfearn, what is your big idea?”

“Ummm. Uh. Let’s see. How do I say it? It is rather, uh, well, elementary. Please don’t get angry with me. It’s called……..SHARING!”

How many days a year does the average motorhome sit unused and empty, just longing to go for a ride? That gotta have new hunting rifle? Let’s say the hunt is real long, maybe 3 weeks. What does the rifle do the other 49 weeks of the year? Honestly, how many days a year is that must have riding snow blower used? How many hours is it used on the few days that it is needed for snow removal? Is there time to talk about that Ab machine, treadmill, stationary bike, and workout DVD?

My daughter just told me that on a super high-use day she listens to her iPod a whopping………..three hours. Surely it is bored to tears the other 21 hours a day. My guess is that the average laptop computer sits idle over 20 hours a day. And how many hundreds of hours a year does that high tech personal Espresso Machine sit beautifully on the cabinet while its owner is at Kaladi Brothers (of course I prefer MCA member owned Cafe’ D’Arte) enjoying a Latte’?

Sharing could have significant positive impact. Sharing would greatly reduce the demand upon the international supply chain. Personal spending would be reduced astronomically. Sharing would require a revival of cooperation. People would interact with each other on a deeper and more consistent level. The stress of upkeep would be spread across several families.

Maybe I have lost my marble (marbles on a good day). Should we care that the average church building (the greatest asset of most congregations) sits empty over 80% of the time?

Now that I am an adult, I realize that I haven’t outgrown one of my very first words……………………..

“MINE!”

PS I hear that most USAmericans should resist the temptation to share their televisions………since they are watched virtually every waking hour of the day.

Posted on 12th December 2007 in Christmas, Message Response, Ministry Development, Musings  •  Comments are off for this post
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MCA Mondays are the Best!

An MCA Monday is a treat to behold. Our Children’s ministry, in keeping with our mission of equipping the Saints, presents Kids In Training. These wonderful children are learning attitudes, skills, and service. Each child is fantastic and brings to the mix their own unique personality. Tonight, our K.I.T. team celebrated the birth of our Lord with a Christmas party.

The world’s greatest teenagers also gather for training each Monday evening. To my knowledge the group doesn’t have a happening name…….. “Youth Drama” seems to be the current title. The members of our cool-name-less drama group are busily preparing for our Family Christmas celebration on December 23 beginning at 6:00 PM.

Special thanks to the students and leaders.

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Posted on 10th December 2007 in Christmas, MCA Family, Ministry Development  •  Comments are off for this post
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Fontanini Collection

The House of Fontanini produces one of the most loved Nativity Collections in the world. We have been entrusted with a growing number of the delightful pieces in the 50″ Institutional Collection. Viewing this treasured Christmas set may give opportunity for mediation, reflection, and contemplation upon the nature of our Lord.

Our newest addition to the collection should arrive sometime this week. One of the pieces we have ordered is the last one available in the U.S. My blog readers will be the first to know what pieces we have purchased and when they have arrived (One of the pieces has already arrived and is in hiding).

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Posted on 10th December 2007 in Christmas, Ministry Development, Prayer  •  Comments are off for this post
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Schmidt and Griffith Wedding Photos

My pastoral blog is designed for the purpose of “Putting the ‘Local’ back into Church.” When we fail to connect the real life of real people to the Real Jesus we fail in the essence of love. Speaking of love………

I finally have received wedding photos from Blaine and Robin and also from Keith and Linda. Celebrate with both couples.

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Posted on 10th December 2007 in Weddings  •  Comments are off for this post
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Jesus: Understanding your experience

For all of you blog readers who are unable to get to MCA for the Jesus Birthday Celebrations I am including a photo or three of the decorations in Live. Brenda led the deco crew to a fantastic presentation of Christmas ambiance.

In addition to the Live decorations, Dale has accomplished great work in Video Cafe’ (you need to swing in and check it out), Traditions, and EdGE. Fay’s team turned our relationship center into a gorgeous representation of the world. Don’t miss the opportunity to thank the artistic designers and praise God for them and their creations.

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Posted on 5th December 2007 in Christmas, Creativity, MCA Family  •  Comments are off for this post
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Senior Christmas Visitation

Your teen ministry is preparing for their 2007 Senior Christmas Visitation ministry. What a highlight for both the senior adults and the teens. The Christmas baskets the teens provide are filled with fantastic gifts. Yet the power of the event is the fantastic love of Jesus that is experienced.

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God is love.

Posted on 5th December 2007 in Christmas, MCA Family, Uncategorized  •  Comments are off for this post