Charlyne Cares is a daily reminder that God cares and that we care about your marriage. Each morning Charlyne sends a devotional and Bob does a Prodigal Perspective on Tuesdays. These come from someone who has experienced the tragedy of divorce and the triumph of a family restored by God speaking to Charlyne's heart not to give up on their marriage after she divorced Bob.
When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh. Matthew 2:10-11
Two weeks from today is Christmas Eve. That does not seem possible. It must be either because Charlyne and I are getting older, or a sign of the times, but time seems to fly by. Actually, the old adage is true, time flies when you’re having fun. Charlyne and I are having fun, ministering to friends around the world and witnessing marriages being healed and people coming to Christ.
About this time every year, people seem to develop “I” trouble. They lose their joy and their hope because their focus is on themselves, instead of on Jesus, whose birth we celebrate, and on the people around them. May I share some of the classic comments that are symptoms of “I” trouble?
• “They got a Christmas bonus and I didn’t.”
• “I don’t hear from my spouse like other standers do.”
• “How can I go to Christmas events when I have to go alone?”
• “I am not receiving many Christmas cards.”
• “I am so defeated, down, and depressed.”
• “I have financial problems.”
• “I have no time.”
• “Why should I even get a Christmas tree?”
• “Why should I read testimonies when I do not have one?”
• “Wonder what I will get for Christmas?”
• “I dread Christmas.”
For most of us, including yours truly, there are both “amens” and “ouches” in that list. Let’s look at what we might do to change some things.
It is as simple as getting rid of the “I” trouble. You do not need an ophthalmologist, but a Heart Doctor, our Lord Jesus, to correct your outlook on Christmas. If we can take the focus off ourselves, and put it on to Jesus, and others, I can promise you that your outlook will change.
May I ask you a question? What have you done for someone else this Christmas season? Not just a gift to someone’s Christmas fund, but how much of yourself have you invested into making Christmas joyful for someone else?
If you reply, “You don’t understand. I am going through a divorce,” you, my friend, are not getting it. You can lose your hurts by becoming involved in helping others. Charlyne and I suspect that too many standers are spending Christmas on the computer. Instead of looking down at a keyboard, look around at the people you could be blessing by acts of love this Christmas season.
Speaking of looking around, last Christmas, tens of thousands of South Floridians looked up to see a sky writer aircraft carefully spell out, “God Loves You.” It was soon followed by a second part, “Turn to Jesus.” Someone had made a clever investment into the lives of many people.
While I have been sharing the cure for “I” trouble, a song about your eyes has been running through my mind:
Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus
If you are seeking a Merry Christmas and it seems to be escaping you, turn your eyes off the crisis, the confusion, the challenges, the courts, and the computer. Turn your eyes upon Jesus and upon His hurting children who you are in a position to help.
My prayer today is that you will have a quick recovery from Christmas “I” trouble. Yes, it is possible for you to both be blessed and to be a blessing to others. The letters on God’s eye chart are not “I” but “HE” and “THEM.” Stop looking down and start looking around, and your Merry Christmas will be there. Soon you will be viewing Christmas with 20/20 spiritual vision.
After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea,. . . “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him.” Matthew 2:1-2
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"My husband and I separated for several months. I was an emotional wreck. I began praying and believing God for my miracle. I later realized I had made my stand an idol. I asked God to forgive me for not appreciating Him and the life He had blessed me with, and for carrying on as if I could not live. That same night my husband came home. Bless the Lord." (Illinois)