The Christmas Story

Waiting for the show to start, my Dad and I were a little nervous. Everything seemed to be working, but we felt like just about anything could go wrong. Dad and I had teamed up to provide the audio coverage of The Christmas story at the Hive in Erina Fair – our local shopping centre. Local churches Erina Baptist and Green Point Baptist came together to perform the Christmas story with Mary and Joseph riding in on a donkey, shepherds with sheep and wise men riding on camels through the shops! Passing shoppers stopped to watch the kids pre-show and listen to the carols and commented that they loved the singing.

After the show, we could take a deep breath and thank God that the show went well. I also though to myself that I am really lucky to live in a country where we are allowed to put on a Christmas play about Jesus and nobody tries to stop us. I am also really thankful that churches and individuals have stuck their hand up and said ‘We want to do this’. Without them, this message would be completely absent from my favourite shopping centre and public meeting place.

As Christmas approaches rapidly I am helping with these shows – two more will happen on Thursday and Friday night at the Hive at 6pm – and I’m busy preparing Grace Wamberal’s Audio/Visual gear for the possibility of Christmas Eve inside if it rains. And as the day draws nearer and everyone around is making last minute preparations for Christmas, I too start to feel the stress. Isn’t it nice though, to go to Christian run carols events, or to events like ‘Road to Bethlehem’, to watch movies like ‘The Nativity Story’ or simply to read through Luke 1 & 2 and marvel at the miracle that happened on that first Christmas. God became man, dwelt among us – and he came to restore us to right relationship with himself. It all causes me to think – how is my relationship with Jesus right now?

God’s strength in me

“Thank you for sharing with us today, I really enjoyed listening – you spoke so well” – It’s great to receive compliments like this, but even better still it’s great to see the ways in which God has helped me to grow over the last two years – and one of those is public speaking. When I left home two years ago standing on stage was a painful experience – I would break out in a sweat and stammer over my words, looking at my notes for some sort of help. During my time on board I found myself many times being asked to stand on a stage in a church and tell people about the ship or tell them about what God has done in my life. I won’t lie, this terrified me! But I soon realised that His strength is perfect when my strength is gone, so I said to God that I would do my best but He would have to get me through it, and I managed. Now after so many experiences like this, it has become much easier to trust Him. Last night I was speaking at Erina Community Baptist Church and as it was coming time for me to speak, I felt God challenge me to not just tell people what *I* had done, but to tell them what He    had done through me. So my notes weren’t as helpful and it didn’t sound very practiced, but in the end God gave me the right words to encourage people that God doesn’t call the qualified, he qualifies the called – and also that He will reveal to us the next step at the right time, not sooner.

So after speaking at Erina and also at Green Point Christian College last Wednesday and at Grace Community Church two weeks ago, this completes my thanksgiving speaking tour. Early next year I will be visiting Churches to tell people what God has in store for me next at OMNIvision. I look forward to that.