“The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel (which means ‘God with us’).” — Matt. 1:23
(Ty and our Christmas tree)
Lately any time we see a Christmas movie or Christmas commercial, we feel a little sad. So, we’ve started analyzing the messages portrayed to us about Christmas. Either the message is materialistic, or it is encouraging us to fight materialism, and instead focus on the true meaning of Christmas, being with those you love. Therefore, we understandably feel sad as we anticipate Christmas this year, the first of many we will spend away from those we love, and we understand why Christmas is a hard time of year for so many who have lost loved ones.
But is that really what Christmas is about?
(Wyck having fun. Definitely different than what he’d be doing in December in Minnesota!)
Being with loved ones certainly is a wonderful blessing, but it is not what Christmas is all about. As we read the Christmas story in Scripture this year, we are impacted by the fact that for Jesus, Christmas was about leaving His family (His heavenly Father), and coming to be with a lost world so that we could know Him. He left His home and Father to become a human and be with us, experiencing what we experience, being near to us, and bringing an opportunity for us to be saved.
That’s why we are in Papua New Guinea. We want to come and live among people who do not know about our Savior, so that we can tell them the truth about Him so they can know Him too. So, this Christmas, we are thanking Jesus for leaving His heavenly home to be with us. Our prayer is that this Christmas you can rejoice in our “God with us,” and seek to bring the gospel to a lost and lonely world.
(Ty doing school)
Thanks for your continued prayers for us. Matt continues to do airport runs for missionaries in our region. Karissa will start teaching 7-8th grade English at the missionary school in January. We are continuing to meet with another family to discuss the possibility of partnering. Ty is doing preschool and we will work on learning how to read soon. Wyck is a master at getting as dirty as he possibly can every day.
(The kids on a makeshift slip ‘n slide)
Till All Know, Matt, Karissa, Ty, and Wyck Long (Tribal Church Planters in Papua New Guinea)
Founded in 1942 as New Tribes Mission
– That God will give us wisdom about who to team up with
– That Karissa can do a good job in her new teaching role
– That God will give us great joy in being with Him, even as we are missing family and friends this Christmas
– That we will be able to love those around us well
– That we can do a good job raising our kids Praise God:
– For this new ministry opportunity at the MK school
– For the family we are talking with about the possibility of partnering
– That our kids have good friendships
– For His continued provision for our needs, big and small
Want to be part of reaching the unreached by giving financially? You can do so at Ethnos360.org/Matt_Long/give.
Or, send a check made out to Ethnos360 to 312 W First St., Sanford, FL, 32771, along with a note saying it is to go to us.