While serving as tentmakers in Asia several years ago, we discovered how Christmas gives great opportunities for reaching out to new people.
Everyone likes to be asked to come to a party, and Christmas gives many opportunities to invite. Even in the country where we lived, where 90 percent of the population are Muslims, more than 70 people joined us when we gathered people to share about Western Christmas traditions and make Christmas decorations in advent.
On December 25th more than hundred people came to celebrate Christmas with us, and we could openly share about Jesus birth and what He means to us. We felt like our living room was one of the noisiest places on earth as it was overflowing with kids, young people and talkative adults. When I stood up to share some words from the Bible, it was however like a divine silence filled the room. We sensed that God created a holy moment where everyone just waited for what he was going to say to us. With awe with read the story from Luke about what happened in Bethlehem that first Christmas eve.
A few days later one of our Christmas visitors came to see us again. – What kind of psychology did you use when you spoke to us? I was very close to being convinced that what you said is true, he told us.
In many cultures Christmas is celebrated with the closest family. There are however many good reasons to think bigger. If we invite others, and especially those who do not yet know Christ, new people will be included in the fellowship that praises the one who “became flesh and blood, and moved into the neighbourhood” (John 1:14, The Message).friendships and relationships... bring more people to God´s kingdom than anything else. Click To Tweet
Barna Research has documented how friendships and relationships between those who know Jesus and those who have still not discovered who he is, brings more people to God´s kingdom than anything else. When we are generous in inviting people, we are at the same time good ambassadors of him who invites everyone to a banquet with «the best of meats and the finest of wines» (Isa 25:6). We should be open to invite people from other nations or another class of society. The one whom we will soon celebrate, told us to make disciples of all people groups and all groups of people.
Maybe it is difficult to keep the conversation going if you invite people you do not usually talk to. That does not matter too much. While working in Asia we got to know a person from Northern Ireland. His Irish accent made it difficult for us to understand him. For the local people it was totally impossible. The love-relationship this man had to Jesus was still very visible and impacted everyone he met.
It is with God´s love like with other kinds of love. It is better to experience it than just hear about it! Let us use any opportunity, including our Christmas celebration, to share Christ´s love with others.It is better to experience God's love than just hear about it! Click To Tweet
With this issue of Tentmaking Briefs the editorial team wishes you a Merry Christmas!