It was Jesus surrendering everything, leaving Heaven to come to this earth. It was about Mary surrendering her life and just, you know, just — be it unto me according to Your Word. I mean, God is the one to put this baby inside of me and this baby is gonna be born at just the right time. And I just — I love Christmas time. I love all the lights. We have fun with decorations. I thoroughly enjoy the Christmas season, but I do know that as a family you have to be intentional about calming down. You had to be intentional about bringing a spiritual focus to this season.
He came from the world.
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You know — Joy to the world, The Lord has come! John] I love that. We see the T-shirts, and we argue about Starbucks cups, and we do all those things. This season is about the Lord Jesus giving up heaven. He gave it up to come down here into the most humble of circumstances, born and placed in a manger.
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What an incredible story. And even just like our presence of time that we can have with our children, or the presence that we have as we are with our loved ones and our relatives that of just bringing the presence of the Lord. A couple of things at this stage of the game, you know — just a few days before Christmas maybe turn out the lights, light a few candles, and just read the Christmas story from Luke Chapter 2.
I love the part where the angels said good news, you know, fear not for behold I bring you good tidings of great joy which shall be to all people. It is not just for us.
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How can we as a family go into a relative situation, you know, into where extended families are — with peace, with joy. And I think a lot of times even just as we go with young children — you can, like the children could make like little pictures of the Nativity to give to grandparents, or the children could put on a very simple little nativity scene and sing a couple songs. John] Have you seen see the little people version?
John] We do too. The little paper cutouts for Nativity. We call it the hunt for baby Jesus. And then they usually put some little candles around it. It takes about 10 15 minutes. We follow the little candles, and then we figure out where it is — and then when we get there we sing a couple Christmas songs and say Luke 2. And then I think also just to pray ahead of time before you go into your extended family situation. So to pray that we would be a light for Jesus among our relatives, and maybe we could have like a little family candlelight service before the present opening time, and you know just pray together — or have the grandchildren say a little something, sing a little song, that would bring Jesus and bring the gospel into our extended families.
John] This really is such a great time of year to do it because it kind of is one of the only times that our kids can really talk openly about Jesus because Christmas is about Christ. It really is. You can even do something like have a birthday cake and actually sing Happy Birthday to Jesus, which just brings that attention back.
What happened to John? And it turned out that my husband had gone into one of the rooms, this is actually the room that my dad had been rooming with — and he was sharing the gospel with this elderly man and the man prayed to receive Jesus Christ on Christmas Eve. John] How did John know? John really has the gift of evangelism, and you do too. My grandmother did — so we would take the bus into downtown Portland. I was a kid, and Grandma — I mean people on the bus were getting saved. Psalm is the longest chapter in the Bible. The chapter is divided into 22 sections, one for each letter of the Hebrew alphabet, with 8 verses in each section, and every verse is about God's Word.
This is a wonderful section of the Bible to listen to. Each section is less than one minute and the whole chapter takes 19 minutes. In this mini-episode, Ann Dunagan answers this question with encouragement about the priority of marriage in our busy lives as moms. Can we begin during pregnancy? Be encouraged as Ann Dunagan, author of The Mission-Minded Family and mom or 7, brings a word of encouragement and practical advice, especially for busy-at-home moms, to spend time with the Lord in prayer without condemnation.
Come listen to the podcast vision for Mission-Minded Families -- along with an introduction to the Dunagan family. Question from a mom in South Carolina: "How can I come against feelings of failure as a mom? Ann Dunagan responds to this question by sharing about the difference between conviction from the Lord and condemnation of the enemy, with encouragement to come against guilt with assurance in God's grace. Ann Dunagan answers this question by encouraging moms in the value of their role, and how they can be a part of the big-epic mission, even with little ones.
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Ann Dunagan shares from her heart as a Christian mom about how to "deal with" October 31st -- from a biblical and historical perspective, focusing on the need for "Harvest" and being a light for Jesus in this dark and needy world. Be encouraged as Ann Dunagan shares practical ideas for busy moms and families, about being ambassadors for Jesus Christ and having a passion to be a witness for Jesus, especially during the month of October.
This episode's Bible teaching is from II Corinthians , focusing on the phrase, "Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us On today's episode, year-old Mark Dunagan shares about his first "solo" mission trip, sharing the Gospel across the Republic of Ireland. Whether someone wants to go, send, pray, mobilize, or welcome, it helps God's followers recognize the needs of the world and the commission we share.
Read biographies of famous missionaries and articles from organizations such as The Traveling Team. Subscribe to prayer email updates from Open Doors.
Don't just learn about missions; pray for missionaries. Also pray for persecuted Christians and unreached people groups worldwide. One great book to use is Pray for the World.
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Let your kids get to know their kids and learn about their countries and cultures. We met internationals in our community. In college I met some Rwandan students and many of their International friends. My vision and heart for God's peoples grew. And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? Pass it On.
After educating yourself, reading, praying, connecting, and memorizing, encourage your children to do the same. With my seven children still at home we sponsor two children, read biography stories, and memorize Scriptures together. Raising children who have hearts for missions will not only impact them today but also in the future.