This Christmas is carrying a theme for me, and I’ve been so encouraged by it!
The theme is replacement- and I believe this theme might bring some Christmas joy to you too.
This Christmas season I’ve been overwhelmed by the way that my God, is a God who replaces.
My wife and I are full-time missionaries to the USA. We rely largely on donations to pay our way in life here in the States.
Just two weeks ago I received an email sharing that one of our most loyal supporters was needing to redirect their funds elsewhere. Breaking into a sweat and a freak out, I went for a walk to my letter box.
“How will we pay all of our bills if we lose support. If one person is decreasing their support, what if another does?? My thoughts ran wild.”
I opened my mailbox to find a check. The largest gift we’ve received since coming to America.
My God is a replacement God. When one thing is taken away- He knows what we need to replace it.
A week ago I found out that our church won’t have a building to meet in from the middle of January. Once again I started freaking out- “What to do? Where to go?”
I went for a drive to pray out the front of a building I would love us to move into, but one that at present, we simply can’t afford.
As I sat praying I saw a man going in and out of the adjacent building. I felt in my heart that I should go and talk to him, and so I did.
He proceeded to tell me he was renting out his property, that he is already renting some rooms out to a church (who’s Pastor is one of my best friends here!), and offered me a $400 discount on the spot should we chose his place.
My God is a replacement God.
This Christmas we have no biological extended family to be with. However, recently two friends of our family from Alaska, offered to be the “adopted” grandparents for our grandkids and have also stepped in as parent figures for us too.
They flew down here for Abigail’s birth, when our parents couldn’t come. “Grandpa” came to my graduation when my Dad couldn’t be there. And tonight we fly out to Alaska to spend Christmas with them. We don’t have family here, but God has provided “family”.
In just a few hours we will fly to Fairbanks and North Pole Alaska for Christmas.
We couldn’t afford all the flights… but you can guess it…
My God is a replacement God.
This Christmas, if anxiety overwhelms you, if frustration has become your norm. If you’re missing a loved one, or you’re feeling alone, know that God is a replacement God.
He replaces anxiety with peace. Frustration with joy. Loneliness with His presence.
Look for the friend today, who has shown up where family could have been.
Look for the peace of Christ where your anxiety could be.
Look for Christ where consumerism has tried to crowd Him out.
He is there. Replacing all that is broken with all that is whole.
Isaiah 61:3 “…He will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair.”
My God is a replacement God. My God is there for you.
That is the story of Christmas. Jesus came to show God’s love, and He still comes, for you.