A different kind of gift this season

Christmas presents under the tree

Christmas presents under the tree are a lovely sight, but are they the only option this holiday season?

Today’s post shares two different ways to give gifts this holiday season:

the gift of your love and presence;

and the joy of giving secret gifts.


Photo by Alan Cleaver. Used with permission. Sourced by Flickr.

Sunday Follow-Up: Joining God’s beautiful moment

On Sunday, Pastor Chelsey led us through an exploration of Ecclesiastes 3.1-15, that famous poem about the times and seasons of human existence. Her message, “The Power of Reflection” is available on our church’s sermon website (or in the archives).

We were challenged to use the power of reflection in the moment, not just looking at the past to make a better tomorrow. Instead, through the poet’s words, God is inviting us to join him by looking for what God is making beautiful at this time by reflecting in the moment. Though life is full of experiences that we don’t have a choice about, we do have choices about how we are going to react, think, respond, and live.

Consider these two examples of seeking a better way to live when faced with unpleasantries: “The Spiritual Practice of Making Mistakes” tells the story of a man who found out during a half-marathon that his pedometer was off by two miles, calling into question all of his training and shaking his confidence. “How to Love Meetings” chronicles one person’s approach to using godly wisdom in even the most boring or exasperating times.

After the Lord’s Supper, (so it may not be in the recorded sermon) Pastor Chelsey talked about the times when God is asking us to do something other than what we may want to do; for example, God may be asking you to make peace when all you want to do is war. “Don’t Follow Your Heart!” continues that challenge.

Finally, here’s a short review of a book called Difference Makers: An Action Guide for Jesus Followers. M Scott Boren’s book is described as

“a gift for us ‘ordinary’ Jesus followers whose plate is full… by showing us how to find God and join what he is doing even in the most apparently mundane aspects of our lives…”


This post is a follow up to a sermon preached by Rev. Chelsey Harmon at Christ Community Church on Sunday, July 28, 2013 in Nanaimo, BC. The stories and resources challenge and inspire us for godly living in the present moment.