Pray for Sport and Recreation 2022

A Christmas Devotion

(by Brian Pickering)

The events which led up to the birth of Christ were no accident but God’s way of fulfilling the old testament prophecies in Isaiah 7:14 and Isaiah 9:6-7. Every event that transpired, from the ordering of the census, the return of everyone to their own city to be registered, through to the actual birth of Jesus, was planned and initiated by God. Out of Bethlehem, a small and insignificant town in the City of David, came the Messiah.

What an incredible event the Christmas story is. Jesus Christ came to earth taking the form of a man in order to bring us reconciliation to our Father God. He entered the world by way of a miracle conception being born as all humans are. He was first a baby, then a toddler, grew into a child, then a teenager before entering adulthood. He experienced all aspects of humanity.

He was therefore able to identify with all people at all stages of life. Christmas celebrates God’s greatest gift He could possibly give us, His Son! His Son then gave the ultimate gift of His own, His life – which was His life’s purpose. Because of this, we can have a personal relationship with God as His sons and daughters. Through Jesus Christ, we are children of the Most High God. So this Christmas, bear in mind the truth of the Christmas story, which led to the ‘True’ Easter story. Let us give thanks and praise to our heavenly Father for these events which have changed our lives forever. No matter how ‘secular’ the world is becoming in disregarding the truth of Christmas, let us boldly proclaim the truth about the birth of Jesus as the reason for the season.

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3:16)

Reflection and Prayer

(by Bjorn Schmid)

Jesus replied, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. Anyone who loves their life will lose it, while anyone who hates their life in this world will keep it for eternal life. Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me. 
“Now my soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour. 
(John 12:23-27 NIV)

“The hour has come” – this must be a line familiar to all sports people; that all their practice and training, the hours expended on strengthening and honing their skills and reflexes, the money spent on coaching and resources, now all comes down to this ‘final hour’ when they will either succeed, or not.

Too often we get carried away with our own ‘mission’, our work, our earthly lives, and forget (or at least defer) to acknowledge and spend time with our loving creator. As we do this we miss out on the whole purpose of our life here on Earth: to get to know God. This creation in all it’s complexity and beauty is just a shadow of what He has waiting for us (1 Corinthians 2 esp. verse 9) in heaven (Revelation 21 and 22).

Having challenges and problems with life here? Why not ask the creator? Seriously, He knows everything and everyone’s hearts and He can reveal to you from His perfect wisdom what you need to know (Jeremiah 33:2-3). He wants to spend time with you with like He did with Adam ‘in the garden’ (Genesis 3:8-9).

But allow yourself to be humble before God. Don’t think you can boss Him or outsmart Him to get what you want. You’re a unique person for sure, but there’s nothing you can do that surprises God: He knows your heart.

I urge you to take time in this Holy Season of Christmas to spend time with God. Start by asking for His forgiveness for ignoring Him and His ways. Acknowledge that Jesus Christ, His son, sacrificed His life and rose from the dead to make it possible for you to be forgiven, and thank Him for His forgiveness. Honestly offer all that you have to Him, and ask Him to come into your life and adopt you as His child. He will respond, you will be accepted by Him, and you will start a new life with Him forever. Amen.

Silent Night

(Original Title: “Stille Nacht”,
Original Lyrics: Fr. Joseph Mohr 1816,
Original Score: Franz Xaver Gruber 1818,
English Translation: John Freeman Young 1859)

Silent night, holy night! 
All is calm, all is bright 
round yon virgin mother and child. 
Holy Infant, so tender and mild, 
sleep in heavenly peace, 
sleep in heavenly peace. 

Silent night, holy night! 
Shepherds quake at the sight. 
Glories stream from heaven afar, 
heavenly hosts sing, Alleluia! 
Christ, the Savior, is born! 
Christ, the Savior, is born! 

Silent night, holy night! 
Son of God, love’s pure light 
radiant beams from thy holy face 
with the dawn of redeeming grace, 
Jesus, Lord, at thy birth, 
Jesus, Lord, at thy birth. 

(Additional verse by Bjorn Schmid 2022)

Silent night, holy night! 
Here I bow, in God’s sight. 
Christ forgive me for not loving You, 
Totally faithful, You create me anew. 
Jesus, Lord, of my life, 
Jesus, Lord, of my life! 

3 comments for “Pray for Sport and Recreation 2022

  1. Simon Kanyembo
    21/12/2022 at 4:59 pm

    OOOOOH WOW, just wow, this is so sweet a write up reminding us of how Jesus came to us and all about his experiences while on earth. Jesus’s birth is indeed the reason for the season. I am happy you acknowledged the fact that the world in its secularism is trying to down play the importance of Christmas and how us who believe it should not be discouraged.

    Merry Christmas and Happy 2023………

  2. 04/12/2022 at 5:28 pm

    OH YES, I completely agree with what Brian wrote and especially this sentence: “Christmas celebrates God’s greatest gift He could possibly give us, His Son!” The past few years whenever I put up a Christmas tree, I place my Nativity set spread out beneath it to let family and friends know that Yeshua, Jesus Christ, is the very BEST GIFT of all!

    I love Bjorn’s addition verses to Silent Night, so beautiful and holy in recognition of the Light of the World, our Savior and soon returning King!

    Precious Sister Lilian and Brother Bjorn, thank you for this beautiful Christmas Newsletter!

    • 17/12/2022 at 8:08 pm

      Greatly appreciated thanks so much, be blessed and more favored, it’s nice be connected. From Kenya Africa.

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