Summary: This sermon was used with video clips from the Peanuts Christmas video.

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There is a little guy some of us never think about except at Christmas. He is short. He has a little round head. He doesn’t have much hair. He seems to always be on the wrong side of the ball in life.

If you have ever paid much attention to the cartoon strip Peanuts, than you know that Charlie Brown represents the underachiever.

If Webster’s decided to put someone’s picture next to the definition of “loser,” I’m sure Charlie Brown’s picture would be a frontrunner. Ole Charlie is a loser with a capital “L.” Charlie Brown is synonymous with being a loser.

Whenever he tries to kick the football, Lucy pulls it away and he lands flat on his back. You would think that he would learn after the fifth or sixth time but I guess that just goes to show us that real losers never learn. And Lucy seems to chew Charlie Brown up and spit him out. In her professional opinion, she believe Charlie Brown to be useless and she lets him know it every chance she gets.

What is ironic about it all is that he is the manager of their baseball team? Their team never and I mean never wins. I seem to remember the one comic strip when they finally scored a run. Not only do they never win, but they hardly ever score. You talk about discouraging!

And what about him and his kite? Every time he goes out to fly his kite, there it is: the kite-eating tree! Charlie Brown seems to always come up short.

Listen to this depiction of Charlie Brown:

You know him well, old Charlie Brown…

Zigzagged polo shirt

dog food pan in hand

kite up a tree

managing a losing team

shamed by Lucy.

Go on…you could do it all the time…

erase his name and write yours.

We long to hear "I love you"

"You are important to me"

"You are special"

"You have ability"

"You have worth"

Most of us hear that very little. What we hear is "Good grief!" With head hung low beneath the kite eating tree you embrace your only friend, Snoopy, and you’re not sure that he really loves you because he can’t talk."

Charlie Brown represents so many of us that I am enlisting his help for a few minutes for this devotional sermon.

First video: C.B and Linus

1. You don’t need to be afraid.

“An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.”

When the angels came to shepherds in that startling display on a winter’s evening they emphasized one thing. . . Don’t be afraid.

Some of you have come in this evening and you feel afraid and full of fear about what tomorrow is going to bring. Maybe you’ve had a rough year. Things just haven’t gone right.

You fear the things you know and you fear the things you don’t know.

Let’s watch and listen to a little more Charlie Brown.

What is that you are afraid of right now? Besides feeling alone are you struggling with relationships? Is being a part of a family or parenting causing you to be afraid? Maybe you are afraid because you never have enough money to cover the needs of your family and those you are responsible for. You’re afraid of what someone is going to think of you or what is going to happen at work or at school. Some of you are afraid of illness and sickness and you are fighting worry and stress over a diagnosis that has rocked and shaken your world.

Please hear the words of the angles... Don’t be afraid. They brought good news of great joy for everyone.

2. You don’t need to feel alone.

There is nothing worse than feeling lonely. The holidays are incredibly tough if you are alone. Hear the words again.

“Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.”

Have you ever experienced the feeling of loneliness? Very few people like to be alone. Very few of us enjoy the feeling of being disconnected from other people. We were made for companionship. We were made to do life with others. We were made to enjoy the company and fellowship of people who extend grace and forgiveness and love to us. Maybe you don’t feel very much of that in your life. Maybe you are here tonight/this morning and you are in a crowd but you feel very much alone.

You can relate to Charlie Brown who had the same feeling most of his cartoon life.

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