Monday, December 20, 2010

Merry Christmas to the Nest!

Christmas is the time to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, God with us! The Nest strives to make it a special time of celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ for the children.
Keep in mind that most children at the Nest are separated from their mothers due to imprisonment. Daily, but especially at Christmas, the Nest must soothe little hearts that are missing mama and longing for home.
Many "Friends of the Nest" work hard to bring good cheer to the children and staff each Christmas, in the forms of friendship, feasting, worship, songs and gifts. It's always a time of surprises and wonder!

Visitors are a wonderful blessing at Christmas-time becasue there are extra laps and hands for snuggling and holding!

and strong backs for climbing onto!

It's always a good time to dance and sing at the Nest, especially at Christmas!

The gifts bring delight!

and sometimes envy!

and more delight!

and a chance to nurture!

sometimes the gifts are mysterious...

and take a long time to assemble...

but the whole community gets to share the joy!

(after hearing all the rules)

Feasting together is fun, and the food is often something different than daily bread!

The celebrations and visitors means lots of coordination for the staff, and answering of questions and giving tours. We pray that God will bring his grace to the staff and visitors of the Nest this Christmas, as they strive to embrace the children in celebration of the birth of Jesus.

Please hold each staff member in prayer, as they each have a family of their own, with whom they desire to celebrate.

Please pray for the imprisoned moms, who are longing for their children, longing for release. Pray that by his spirit, God would be working in the hearts of each mom, bringing them to repentance and healing from the sin that brought them to prison in the first place.

Each one of us in entangled by the destructive forces of sin. Each one of us needs the repentance and healing that is only possible through Jesus Christ.

As an adult, Jesus spoke of himself, echoing the prophecy of Isaiah:
The Spirit of the Lord and king is on me.

The Lord has anointed me to tell the good news to the poor people.

He has sent me to comfort those whose hearts have been broken.

He has sent me to announce freedom for those who have been captured.

He wants me to set the prisoners free from their dark prisons.

He has sent me to announce the year when he will set his people free.

He wants me to announce the day when he will pay his enemies back.
Our God has sent me to comfort all those who are sad.
He wants me to help those in Zion who are filled with sorrow.

I will put beautiful crowns on their heads in place of ashes.

I will anoint them with oil to give them gladness instead of sorrow.

I will give them a spirit of praise in place of a spirit of sadness.

They will be like oak trees that are strong and straight.

The Lord himself will plant them in the land.

That will show how glorious he is!

Isaiah 61:1-3

Merry Christmas!

posted by Cathy Woller for Saba, International