2023 Worship Guide

Page 6 2023 Worship Guide LINCOLN DAILY NEWS December 2023 Pastor Larry Crawford, Open Arms Church “No news is good news”…you have probably heard someone say that phrase and maybe even said it yourself. Perhaps it is true in the waiting room while a loved one is in surgery or when you are awaiting test results, and they tell you if you don’t hear from us everything is good. But what about when it is not? Those moments of uncertainty when you have more questions than answers. Or those moments when you desperately need an answer…something and the silence is deafening? The world was waiting for 400 years…what we call the “silent years”, the time between the Old Testament and the New Testament. God, where are you?...crickets. Then the announcement came. “And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good news of great joy, which shall be to all people.” (Luke 2:10) What?!? Good News. The very first Christmas was announced, and it was coming with Good News…the best news! The world sure needed some good news then…and it really needs it now. Christmas is all about Good News. “Bah humbug you say.” Actually, without Christmas, there would be no Good News. Let me take a moment of your time and share with you some real-life stories where Good Good News! News was experienced and then give you an invitation to come experience it for yourself. I just returned from a mission trip in Lima, Peru where so many experienced the Good News I am writing about. Let me take a moment to share about a young lady who experienced the Good News of a Fresh Start, a second chance, a new beginning. As I was praying for people at the altar, the Lord gave me a word for her from Him. As I shared the word, she wept holding on to my hand as one holding on for dear life as she experienced the healing power of Jesus healing deep wounds from the past and giving her a fresh start. Recently Wendy and I were in the waiting room of a hospital with some dear friends as one of their family members, a precious friend of ours was in surgery to remove an aneurysm. So many had been praying for a miracle…for Good News. The doctor came out and said, “the man upstairs must have been listening. I took over 50 photos from every angle and THERE IS NO ANEURYSM! It is a miracle!” A few Sundays ago as I was greeting people in the lobby after church a mom and daughter came to me with tears in their eyes and joy on their face. We want to get baptized! They experienced the Good News of Salvation that day and were baptized the next Sunday! For some, this time of year is a difficult time. It is all you can do to make it through the holidays, not even thinking it possible to actually enjoy them. I have Good News for Continued --