Dead of Winter

by Velma Amundson

My mother has been visiting us over Christmas. We were talking the other day about being in the “dead of winter”. You know, that time of year when Christmas is over, it’s too cold to go out and “do” anything, it’s dark, and seemingly hopeless. I will admit that I have problems with winter. It’s too long and cold for me, and I end up feeling restless and a little lost. OK, sad might work. I look at the snow covering the green grass, the trees, and everywhere and I feel just as blanketed as the world outside.

But, we’ve just entered the season of Epiphany in the church year. For me it’s when we look at how Christ’s light shines in the world. We see how He is God, our Savior,His beauty and glory light up a world darkened by sin. January’s “The Lutheran Ambassador” showed various ways that Christ’s light shines. For me it shines in the “dead of winter” with the promise that God made:

“While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease” (Genesis 8:22, ESV).

I know I can make it through winter, or hard times, or anything else because of Christ’s promise of resurrection, both His and ours at the last days. No matter how dark and bleak winter might get, Christ’s light is never extinguished. I pray that Christ’s light will illuminate your walk and your life. God bless you.

Editor’s note:  You can also connect with the Ambassador Magazine on Facebook.

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Merry Christmas!

by Velma Amundson

Editor’s Note:  In the AFLC, we celebrate the Christmas Season from Christmas Day up until January 5th, then we celebrate the coming of the Magi on January 6th which we call Epiphany.  So, I am really only a couple of days late with this post! 🙂  All of us here on this blog pray you had a blessed Christmas and that you will have an awesome New Year in 2013!

Our youth group led the Christmas eve worship service again this year…we had “smelly” shepherds and angels roaming the congregation during the sermon. Not exactly what you would have expected. But it fit perfectly.

I have to tell you about this group. We’re very proud of them. Every year the youth group asks for a family in the Abused Resource Center to go shopping for. They raise money through the year so that they have enough to go shopping. Then they go shopping during the first couple weeks of December. The youth themselves pick out the gifts, wrap them and one of the adults delivers them to the Resource center. They never see the family they’ve shopped for, but they are very enthusiastic about what they do. This year they went shopping for a family that consists of a single mother and her 7 plus (one due any day) children. They had so much fun wrapping the gifts and showing them off to anyone willing to look. This is the same group that keeps inviting their friends to come to Confirmation with them. (And their friends do, and tend to stay!)

Our youth show us the Spirit of CHRISTmas by what they do, with their willingness and enthusiasm for helping others, by sharing the message of the Gospel with their friends, and by doing any task we throw at them.  They make sharing the Gospel look easy.  They just do it.

I pray that in the coming year, this same Spirit will dwell within you. That you would be enthusiastic for Christ. I pray that God would richly bless you.