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Summary: During the Christmas Seaon feelings inevitably get hurt. Learn how to forgive those who have hurt you. Series: Christmas is For-Giving Message: Christmas is For-Giving Topics: Forgiveness, Pain, Hurt, Joseph, Peter, Jesus, Grace, Blessing, Prayer T

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Series: Christmas is For-Giving

Message: Christmas is For-Giving

Topics: Forgiveness, Pain, Hurt, Joseph, Peter, Jesus, Grace, Blessing, Prayer

Text: Genesis 45:1-3, 14-15

Date: January 8, 2011

Pastor: David McBeath

(Based on an outline from lifechurch-tv.)

INTRODUCTION

Today we begin a new sermon series called Christmas is for giving. Let me start by saying my family had a great Christmas! We went back to Indiana last week to celebrate with family. Here is what was so great about Christmas. Giving! It is great to give and watch people enjoy the gifts we give. Parents you know what I am talking about don’t you! When you see you child’s eyes light up and they dance around the room because the love their present!

Christmas is for giving! Why because God gave us the greatest Gift—Jesus—who came to forgive us of our sins. So Christmas is for giving and its message of forgiving or forgiveness lasts all year long.

Now even though Christmas has incredible potential to be great, it has the same potential to be hurtful. Doesn’t it? That’s what we are going to talk about this morning, how do we deal with the hurt the Christmas often brings to our lives?

It is this hurt that that causes many of us to say “I hope we just survive the holidays” or to say “We’re planning on having a “cordial” Christmas.” We will be cordial than watch out. We’ll get into the car, drive away, and talk bad about our family the rest of the ride home! Anyone been there?

So how does all this hurt come about? Well for many of us it is caused by what family members or others have done to us in the past.

Christmas Shuffle

Here’s an example. You all know what the holiday shuffle is right? If you don’t, it is the process where you spend 2-10 days going from family gathering to family gathering celebrating Christmas. Now the shuffle is hard enough when there is no divorce and there are just two sides of the family to visit. Throw in a divorce or two and it gets a whole lot more hectic. In the back of everyone’s head are the questions:

• Who went where?

• How come they couldn’t have come to our house?

• Why do we have to go there?

• How much time did they spend with them compared to us?

• Why didn’t they come home this year?

Inevitably feelings get hurt! And arguments arise over where to go and what to do? [No one here has ever had this argument with their spouse, right? Judging by the smirks on your face you all know what I am talking about.]

The Present Pile

How about this example? I was talking to a friend. He knew he had ticked off his family by going to your wife’s relatives last year instead of his. He and his wife are at his Mom and Dad’s the next year while the extended family is sitting around the Christmas tree. Presents are being passed out and he notices a huge pile of presents in front of his brother and sister in laws. …His wife …has 1 present. Ouch! Can you believe that? I mean it is so bad everyone is uncomfortable! Sad but true and I am sure there are a few of you here this morning that can relate!

The Psycho Relative

Now factor into all this what many people call the psycho factor. You know what I’m talking about, don’t you? I imagine it like the book of Job. Satan is walking around the families of the earth then going to God to get permission to drop 1 Psycho, hard to deal with, lunatic, in every family. You know the person. …That family member that says and does the wrong thing at the wrong time all the time or who is just a royal pain in the backside! ….There is one in every family. Isn’t there?

Now just to prove this little illustration, everyone that has a psycho in their family, raise your hand. Put it up high, don’t be afraid. Leave them up … don’t put them down…cause this is important. Now look around! Those that don’t have their hand up…they might be the Psycho one in their family! You thought you family was normal, but they are all talking about you! Now I’m just kidding! Don’t get mad at me or you’ll have to apply this message to me this morning.

JOSEPH

Now we aren’t the only folks who have been hurt by family members. The bible tells us the story of a guy named Joseph a young guy who is Daddy’s favorite. He got the best present from his Dad—a designer jacket made of many color. It was probably Ralph Lauren.

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