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The following, excerpted from “Painting Grace” is found in Thomas Kinkade’s Come Let Us Adore Him, a Christmas gift I received several years ago.  I trust it resonates with you as it has with me.

“On the canvas of my mind, I see the picture clearly. A little child, clothes torn and tattered, stands lost in the heart of a deep, dark forest.  As night descends, his fears arise, heart pounding as he turns to the right . . . to the left . . . and recognizes nothing.  Can see nothing.;  He knows he is as good as dead, for it is only a matter of moments before the night creatures overtake his fragile form.

“But look!  There is a light in the distance, and steadily it comes closer.  Suddenly the boy can see the enormous shape of a man, holding the lantern above his head.  “It is the King,” the boy says to himself.  “And He has come just for me.”

“And with that, the giant but gentle King bends down and scoops up the boy in His big, burly arms.  “Come with Me, My child,” the King says to the boy.  “I have prepared a wonderful place for you.  It is a word full of light and beautiful things – a world that grows in the grace of my love.  it is reserved just for you.  Come, let Me show you the light.”

“Imagine if you were that child – the joy of feeling His arms surround you with a safety and love like you’ve never know.  Buried in His chest there is warmth, peace, and hope.  It is the message of true love, and it is the portrait of Christmas.

“It astounds me that God sees me as that little boy, lost without hope in a dark and dying world.  Then out of the dismal night comes His light of hope – His own Son – who saves me from certain death, and places me in the kingdom of His love.  . . . .

“When I was a child, I saw Christmas only through the eyes of a child.  It was my joy to play with my toys and with my friends on the day when all the world seemed right.  As a parent, now, I get a glimpse of the joy our heavenly Father feels when He gives good gifts to His children.  Though sometimes children respond wrongly – like I always did when I got clothes instead of toys – the gifts from our Father are always for our good.  And His love is the reason I rejoice.

“This Christmas season I hope you find the chance, amid the chaos and crazy schedules, to settle in for the night and shine the Savior’s message of light on your loved ones.  And in your home, and mine, God’s children will discover again the joy of Christmas, for the Light of the World has come.  And, He shines in you and me.”

MERRY CHRISTMAS . . . BLESSED CHRISTMAS . . . MARANATHA