Friday, December 9, 2011

Christmas Alone

In 1939, Dad Jespersen (my wife Margaret’s father) was serving alone as a missionary in China on the Tibetan border. There was absolutely no sign of celebration of Christmas in this small heathen village.

Dad was raised in a large Christian family in Canada who happily and joyfully celebrated Christmas to God’s glory every year.

Dad was lonely and sad to be alone with no Christians in the village, so he invited about twenty men from the small town to his little house, served hot tea and sweets and then explained the significance of this special day in December and the birth of the Son of God who was sent to earth to die for our sins.

So whether we are lonely or surrounded by many, let’s be sure to tell others of Christ this Christmas, God in the flesh!

Burnt Soup and Butter Biscuits with a Wonderful Wife!

A few days ago Margaret made an excellent lunch for several from ACTION. I went home at 11:15 AM to help her as she always prepares so nicely, but with all the care for dad, her time is limited.

Everything was great, but in our concern for setting a nice table, making tea, preparing the dessert and baking the biscuits, we forgot to stir the soup which burned! Margaret really makes great soup and worked on this so hard, but burned it was! Instead of throwing it out, however, we just added lots of hot sauce which helped to mask the smoky taste!

Results, we all enjoyed the “smoky” soup, salad, biscuits with Canadian honey, English tea, and dessert.

Why do I write this? Simply to say that even if the soup is burned, I would not trade my dear, godly wife for all the great meals in the world. Margaret is a great cook, wonderful homemaker, caring and loving wife, but her walk with God is what encourages my heart and helps set the example of Christ-like loving for His glory!

So, go ahead and pass the burnt soup. Living with such a wonderful person, anything tastes good! Glory!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Have you been accused of killing someone?

Soon after obtaining my driver’s license, I was driving on a main highway with one of my friends, Bob. A lady did not stop at a stop sign and I ran into her. Several people died in this terrible accident.

Later one of the widowers angrily came to my house looking for me. My grandfather was there that day and answered the door. The man said, “I am looking for that teenager who killed my wife.”

My elderly grandfather immediately grabbed the man by the collar, looked him in the eye, and said with force, “Young man, I realize that you are very sad over losing your wife. I have lost my wife also years ago. There is nothing so terrible, but you need to realize that my grandson had nothing to do with your wife’s death. It was someone’s fault who ran the stop sign and in whose car your wife was riding. Do not become angry in your sadness!”

Is this not the way we as believers act when there is a crisis or problem? We become angry. At work, home, school, or even in our church, when someone treats us rudely, we become angry and resentful. We strike out even to those who are not involved with the situation. It seems as if we have to blame someone for something. It is easy to become angry at others rather than trusting God in the situation.

“Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (Hebrews 4:16, nasb).

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The State of California is on Your Side

When I was less than 16 years old and after obtaining my drivers license early, I was involved in a major traffic accident involving two fatalities. I was driving on a main highway, and a lady, driving a car full of other women who had been working in the vineyards, ran a stop sign directly in front of me. I was driving about 55 mph with no way to avoid her. At impact, I lost most of my teeth, a good friend with me went through the windshield, and was almost killed. He panicked and ran from the accident scene. I ran after him and was able to tackle him a half a block away from the accident. No one helped me care for him because in those days people were sued for helping. I took off my shirt and wrapped it around his head wound which was bleeding profusely. When the ambulance finally came, I was bare-chested and covered with blood. I held my friend’s pressure points all the way to the hospital.

You can imagine the scene when I was in the waiting room as the medical staff took care of those seriously injured. I had no shirt, was scared, had thoughts of what had happened and didn’t know if my friend would die. There was blood everywhere. I knew already that others had died. My step-father’s car was totaled, and I knew the wrath of others would be upon me being a teenager driver.

About this time, a state patrolman walked in to the waiting room. He was an impressive figure, well over six feet in height. I always remember how he approached me, took off his hat, and asked if I was Doug Nichols. He sat down next to me, put his arm around me, and said, “Young man, I know you are very frightened. I have thoroughly investigated the scene of the accident, and want you to know that you are not in the wrong. People will be angry with you because you are a teenager, and there are several deaths, but I want you to know that you did everything right. Remember one thing, the State of California is on your side!”

My mother arrived soon afterward crying, and my step-father swore in anger at the loss of his car. Others were crying and screaming, and yet this state patrolman continued to sit with his arm around me.

What a great testimony of a public official, especially his example to us as Christian believers in our care of others even if they are in the wrong or thought to be in the wrong! The world is filled with people who are fearful, uncertain, and filled with pain. You and I as believers can put our arms around them and say something much greater than “The State of California is on your side.” We can say, “God is here, and He will care for you.”

“Casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you” (1 Peter 5:7, nasb) ministering to people the grace and the peace of God through His Son Christ Jesus.