I think the older I get, the more I enjoy Christmas. Just last night I watched the Trans Siberian Orchestra Christmas Special. I have also been setting the DVR to catch as many Christmas Specials as I can. I enjoy the giving, and I have to admit, I still enjoy the occasional getting although not always material things. I enjoy getting little things, like someone saying they are praying for me, someone telling me they are supporting a form of ministry I do, or even something like my daughter got me last Christmas, two goats to help a family in a third world country. Yep, those types of things I still enjoy getting.
One of my favorite Christmas shows is A Christmas Story, you know the story of the little boy named Ralphie who wants a Red Ryder BB Gun for Christmas. I love it because I can imagine what it is like to want something so badly for Christmas. I never knew that so much as a child, but I have had the joy of seeing it for my children. In fact, every Christmas is mixed with an abundance of gifts, and a message regarding service and loving others less fortunate.
My daughter has learned those lessons well as is exhibited in her and her husbands' gift to me last year. This year I requested they purchase for me the removal or cover up of tattoos of gang members. A wonderful gift provided by Mennonite Central Committee. There were other things, things like a gift to The Virtual Pew to help the church in Lahore Pakistan. Those types of things still excite me.
My son on the other hand, while just turning 17, has moved away from the toys and games, and now wants electronics and clothes. He has not gotten to the place where he understands the accumulation of junk, even after moving a ton of junk from a larger house to a smaller house, but he is getting there. That is okay, he is not quite to the point yet, but he has an understanding of his needs to give to those less fortunate. He will go with me next week to give clothes and needed items to the homeless here in Wichita.
My son and daughter have learned the benefits, and yes, even dangers of helping those less fortunate. For my wife and son, we will learn more this Christmas about less is more but that does not change the point that Christmas is not just for kids. It is for everyone.
As we enter Christmas, we can get all uptight about the materialistic nature of it. I would challenge to let it go and realize kids are kids. Jesus wanted to reward kids and saw kids as special. He had such a love for them. Jesus went so far to tell us we must become like children if we want to see Heaven.
There is nothing wrong with getting excited about Christmas, nothing wrong with wanting gifts, nothing wrong with wanting to give, nothing wrong with celebrating in full-force. The issue becomes in what ways we do that. Can you get as excited about the gift of a goat to someone in need in a third world country as you can about the newest PS3 system? How about as excited about having someone give a homeless man a coat in your honor as opposed to the receipt of a new coat for yourself? When you can get to those places, you find the wonderful place where being a kid at Christmas blends with being an adult. It is not such a bad place.
In recognition of that, and that I started work this morning at 2:50 AM due to going to a wrestling tournament today, I am featuring some children series videos this morning. There are some old cartoons and fun things the kids will enjoy. Here is my challenge to you, sit down, watch at least one of these in its entirety with a child, if not a child around you, send it to a relative or a friend with children so their parents can do it with their kids. Then think, reflect, on your child's attitude this Christmas. Think of how Jesus wants to bless children, and think of what ways are you like a child? What types of gifts could you get that would honor you, while at the same time show love to others? Then as you think on those things, act on them. Let others know to give a gift to The Virtual Pew so they can take a needy child to the movies or sponsor a child through Compassion International. Do something like the above, while we would appreciate the gift, do not take this the wrong way, it does not have to be our ministry, it could be any ministry that does good work. It might not even be a ministry, it could be someone volunteering to pick up trash in a local park in your honor, or taking $10 to the local homeless shelter, it could be a variety of things, the sky is the limit. Now that type of giving is special. Of course the things we do at The Virtual Pew really excites me, but I do not expect those types of things to excite everyone.
Now before we get to the videos today, hopefully everyone will remember to pass the blogs along to your friends. The Christmas Special blogs from TVP can help a lot of people. You can show them what we are doing by Clicking Here at this Link. They can see various topics and see about the ultimate video blog that will be posted later in the week, certainly prior to the first of next week. They can also get in the Christmas Spirit by Clicking Here and reading about The Virtual Pew and our Christmas giving options.
Now for those that don't know, make sure you check out the numerous articles and blogs by checking out the archives. If visiting The Virtual Pew they will be on the right hand side of the page. If visiting MySpace they are archived on the left hand side of the page. Scroll down to where you see newer or older listed under archives and then click there.
Now we also want to remind you that you can visit www.thevirtualpew.com and on the front page scroll down to the left hand side of the page where you sill see our store. Your purchases through our Amazon store provides needed funds to The Virtual Pew. If you do not see something on the page to buy, you can click on the search engine for the store, (do not put anything in the search box at this time) and you will then be taken to Amazon where you can search for anything you desire. Hopefully as you shop for Christmas you will consider a gift to The Virtual Pew and/or at the very least shop our store. The items on the store page are highly recommended.
Now prior to checking out the videos for the day, here is that information, contact and contribution information regarding The Virtual Pew. Again, thanks for visiting, have a Merry Christmas or whatever holiday you celebrate. Just remember though, from The Virtual Pew, we wish you a Merry Christmas.
Contact and Giving Information
Oh Yea, here is that contact information again.
The Virtual Pew
P.O. Box 17731
Wichita, KS 67217
Or you van give on line via Pay Pal at:
To become a part of The Virtual Pew, visit, http://www.thevirtualpew.com/
To learn more about me visit http://www.furches.org/ I am also active on MySpace at: http://www.myspace.com/mikefurches I have another blog at http://blog.myspace.com/mikefurches To visit the Hollywood Jesus group at MySpace with membership by numerous Hollywood Jesus reviewers visit: http://groups.myspace.com/hollywoodjesus For a more in depth weekly study and conversation you an visit: http://virtualpewsermon.blogspot.com/ where you can access deeper teaching and ultimately videos for viewing and teaching. You can also subscribe to the newsletter at www.thevirtualpew.com or see the newsletter on line at http://thevirtualpewnews.blogspot.com/ You can also sign up for the free newsletter from The Virtual Pew by visiting the main page for The Virtual Pew, or you can see the newsletters online by visiting this web site: http://thevirtualpewnews.blogspot.com/ You can contact me via email at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org For those interested in knowing more about my own story, contact me for a free e-copy of my book The Keystone Kid in pre-edit form.
The Powerpuff Girls - 'Twas The Fight Before Christmas 1/5
The Powerpuff Girls - 'Twas The Fight Before Christmas 2/5
The Powerpuff Girls - 'Twas The Fight Before Christmas 3/5
The Powerpuff Girls - 'Twas The Fight Before Christmas 4/5
The Powerpuff Girls - 'Twas The Fight Before Christmas 5/5
Lazytown Surprise Santa 1/3
Lazytown Surprise Santa 2/3
Lazytown Surprise Santa 3/3
Ed Edd and Eddy Jingle Jingle Jangle 1/3
Ed Edd and Eddy Jingle Jingle Jangle 2/3
Ed Edd and Eddy Jingle Jingle Jangle 3/3
Suzy Snowflake An old Cartoon from Chicago, as a reminder of our own childhood
Morten Harket A Kind of Christmas Card watch and listen to the words, then think about what is really important