Under the Authority of Christ, in the Mighty Name above ALL Names, the Lutchman family extends to one and all the tremendous Blessings of Heaven. These blessings began on a cold hill in Bethlehem, (home of my dear friend Jamal Rashmawy, a Palestinian Christian who grew up on the Biblical fields of BOAZ!!!! He also walked the hills where Shepherds watched their flocks by night. A member of my church - Springfield Bible - Jamal and his wife, Afaf, now own the Holy Land Diner in Springfield, Illinois).
These blessings came down to Earth, as the Glory of the Lord shone all around these poor shepherds, not the rich church leaders of this or that time, but dirt poor shepherds. This was an indication of why and for whom Christ descended to the earth He created - to meet us in our poverty, dirty and unclean as we were. Therefore, we wish you a Happy and Holy Christmas. May His Joy and Power gave you and yours all the Peace and Happiness you desire!! AMEN!
Finally, what a December to remember! I lost my voice after Thanksgiving and it returned just in time for me to teach on Prayer and Fasting at Berlin Christian Church, Berlin, Illinois, on December 2. It was impressive to be a part of that, as BCC embarks on a 31 day fast to seek the Lord for their new church building! Oh, that ALL churches would do that! Later that afternoon, we had a wonderful visit to the Mary Bryant Home for the Blind with our 4H group to take a Christmas tree, gifts and sing carols with the residents there! The amazing thing was, even though they were blind, they knew all the words to ALL the carols better than us who could see!!
On December 8, our entire family - Bernie III, Sam, Sarah, Vicki and I - had the tremendous privilege of ministering to the wonderful seniors at the Villa Nursing Home, Sherman, Illinois. What a beautiful time of ministry and Christmas fellowship we led them in. After a short Christmas message, I got to follow up pray with a particular lady. She had a tumor on the back of her head which I had laid hands on back in April 2007. She told me, after 8 months, it was shrinking and wanted me to do the same! I gave God all the Glory as I anointed her with Holy oil from the Holy Land and prayed. We even got to minister to catholic Franciscan brother there, who came to listen to us!
On December 8 and 15, our oldest son Bernie, played at two Christmas concerts with the Sangamon Valley Youth Symphony (see photo) and with the Illinois Symphony at the Sangamon Auditorium. He is a percussionist and is in his third year with the SVYS.
Our final ministry outreach this Christmas Season 2007 was at the Stonecroft Ministries Springfield Christian Women's Club at the Northfield Center, Springfield. We were given the music program and that was an absolute delight, my friends!! AMEN! My sweet little daughter, Sarah made her first public solo debut, outside of a retirement home with a tearjerking verse or two of Silent Night! The wonderful thing about family ministry is folks just love seeing the kids! My son, Sam, is also a hit on his violin. When possible, that is the right atmosphere to bring home a short, hardhiting Gospel message!
The Good Lord has been amazing to us all year long, during 2007! We have been blessed to minister in churches, nursing homes and the various speaking engagements from Joliet to Colorado Springs! I can not begin to state how humbling all of this. The completion and publication of my first book "TWO MINUTE WARNING" was the fulfillment of a life-long dream. We still have some duties at church for Christmas.
Each Christmas and New Year's Sunday, for over a decade, I have been privileged to lead the music during the worship services. This year, my son Sam, gets to play a Piano duet with brother Gene Grman, an amazing 80 year old man, who still lifts pianos at his store! Then Sam plays part of Silent Night on his violin as the service begins! All of us can not wait for 2008 to see how the Lord moves....for His Own Glory!!
MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL, AND TO ALL A GOOD NIGHT!
Photos above are from SVYS Christmas Concert, Dec. 8, 2007 at the massive First United Methodist church building and from our Family's music ministry at StoneCroft Ministries Christian Women's Club, Northfield Center, Springfield, Illinois.