What do you think of when you hear the word “Christmas?” Many people think of the decorations, music, and food, but one thing comes to my mind when I think about Christmas …
Christmas is a promise. 
Every December, presents wait under the tree, gathering pine needles and distracting the cat but also holding endless potential. From a child’s perspective—and, if we’re honest, from an adult’s too—literally anything could be wrapped up inside that paper.
Outdoors, lights pop like sprinkles on fallen snow, wreaths frame front doors, and inflated Darth-Vaders-in-Santa-hats take over yards. During Christmas, our normal world feels like it falls through a portal into a realm of wonder. 
But the first Christmas held none of that. No lights, no presents, likely not even snow. The families crowded into houses on every street in Bethlehem knew nothing of the significance of the night. And yet, in the middle of the normalcy, promise broke into the world.
I want to offer you four pictures—windows, really—into the promise that came so many years ago and still means so much today.
In fact, we’ve put together a free eBook called “Advent and the Promise of Christmas” that will help prepare your heart and mind for this beautiful season of hope as we celebrate our Savior’s birth.

You can get the eBook here: https://live.e3partners.org/advent-and-the-promise-of-christmas-ebook
I know this resource will encourage you and help you reflect upon the hope of the first Advent and Jesus’s arrival which changed our world forever. I hope you are well and I pray God blesses you this Advent season.