What a nice Christmas letter I received in the mail

Published 5:19 pm Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Many times I am told by nice people that they read my column. I want you to know how happy that makes any of us who write for the Post-Searchlight. This week, I received a very special “gift” from someone who referenced my column on Christmas gifts last week. It was precious and I want to share it with you. The letter hits the nail on the head so far as appropriate gifts for this season are concerned.

There was no name on the envelope nor was the letter signed so I don’t know who sent it. I’m assuming it was a woman because the writing was very stylish. I remember a teacher of mine casting aspersions upon my “hen-scratching” and I assure you, ma’am, your writing was neat and readable.

She began by addressing me as “Brother Lynn.” Of all the ways people speak of me as preacher, I like Brother the best. It’s old style and so am I.

Email newsletter signup

Her first paragraph introduced her as “80 years young” and she said “I love my Lord.” Then she referenced a verse of scripture from The Letter of James. It was 1:17 and that was what led me to know she was remembering my column about gifts.

James 1:17 reads, “Every good gift, every perfect gift, comes from above.” My friend, then, commenced to give some great gift ideas; better than the hatchimals or, even the Barbie Soda Shoppe, I wrote about last week.

How about giving of yourself, she encouraged. Read to someone who can’t see well anymore. Since my mother has developed a serious case of macular degeneration, this gift hits home. There are plenty of people who could use, not just the reading, but the company.

A Christmas song tells us that we are in the midst of “most wonderful time of the year,” but one doesn’t have to look around too much to see evidence that it can also be a most stressful and anxious time of the year. For many who have lost loved ones, holidays only exaggerate their losses.

My letter-writing friend is “right-on” when she encourages us to think of others during this time. Send a Christmas card to a friend who is not able to get out during this season. Or better yet, go by and see that shut-in or that friend who has moved to the nursing home.

Do the small things, like baking an extra batch of cookies for your neighbor or visit a homeless shelter. Instead of a bought gift, share yourself. Chances are you will make at least two people happier: the one you visit and yourself.

I could tell my friend was a faithful person. She says don’t forget to thank God every day, many times, for the fact that a loving and gracious God is watching over us, even though there are times when we might not feel so “watched over.” God is good all the time and all the time, God is good.

She also emphasizes one more aspect of our lives as she closes her letter. Pray and she says it three times! She reminds me that we live in troubled times and there cannot be too much prayer.

Finally, she is confident that the One whose life we celebrate during Christmas, has come so that we might have eternal life. At the end she says, “Thank Him and think what a home in heaven will be like!”

To my friend whose name I don’t know, but whose love for God and others I share, thank you for my Christmas letter.