Your Church +Portland
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Merry Christmas

Thank you to all our supporters, prayer partners and our great team that is helping make Your Church +Portland a successful church launch. Our website stats show that we are averaging almost 650 views per month, with the bulk of those views coming from the greater Portland area! We continue to meet new faces and work on building relationships with the people. We have been shown favor with the local pastors and the Lord encourages us weekly to keep pressing forward.  

Thank you for thinking about us this Christmas season; for the gifts, cards and words of encouragement that several of you have sent. I pray for you often and thank God for you!  

To start off my Christmas blog, I challenge your thinking with 5 reasons why I believe Santa Claus might be a woman:
1. Christmas is a big, organized, warm, fuzzy, nurturing social deal. Do you really think a guy could possibly pull all that off?
2. 
Men wouldn’t use reindeer as a mode of transportation. Men would inevitably end up gutting & strapping them to the rear bumper of the sleigh.
3. 
Men can't pack a bag and possibly think of what everyone else needs in the bag.
4. 
Men don't answer their mail. 
5. 
Being responsible for Christmas would require way too much commitment! (Sorry guys!)

This week I’ll be sharing the Christmas story with the family, which is a regular custom we have in our home since day one. I love the story surrounding Jesus’ birth…especially the part about the angel visiting Mary. I remember reading somewhere from a historian who said Mary was approximately 17 years of age at the time of the angel’s visitation; which for me was stunning. It’s hard to imagine my daughter Cassie who is now that age, telling me she is pregnant - let alone engaged! But it definitely brings things into perspective – like what an incredible young lady Mary must have been to walk this out over the next 9 months!

When Mary asked the angel how this was all going to happen, the angel responded and told her that it was by the power of the Holy Spirit, and then said something incredible;

"For every promise from God shall surely come true." (Luke 1:37 The Living Bible)

And that to me is what makes this story so amazing. This small verse alone has reminded me time and time again that when God is in it, it’s going to happen. The impossible will become possible. Everything God said shall surely come true. 
All Mary had to do was believe it.

Then Mary said, "Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word." And the angel departed from her. (Luke 1:38 New King James Version)

God makes it so easy on us. Just like Mary, we don’t have to work, just believe. We believe Him because we trust Him. Then it transforms the way we think, the way we act, and the way we live. We believe He has our best interest in mind. We believe what He says is life, and it literally becomes health to our spirit, soul and body. Isn’t that awesome? 

Just like this young 17 year old girl – when she believed it, it changed her life forever. It just takes us believing one promise from God. One insight, which then sparks a chain reaction from Heaven, which in turn changes our lives forever. Now that’s a Christmas story! 

From our house to yours – Merry Christmas!
Pastor Shian

Pastor ShianComment