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Volume 2, Issue 4 - December 2005

"The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel"—which means, "God with us."
~ Matthew 1:23 NIV ~


As amazing as it is to me, here we are again at the start of another Christmas season, and I’m so glad you’ve joined us for a FaithWriters’ celebration of this most wonderful time of the year.

So if you need a break from writing Christmas cards and searching for that perfect present, then sit back, relax and enjoy some time with us. There’s plenty of inspiration and refreshment to be found in this month’s Issue.

Although the majority of our readers will be dreaming of a white Christmas, there are also quite a lot, like me, who can’t imagine it being anything but hot. Living in the Southern Hemisphere means that Christmas Day comes right in the midst of the summer heat – and I must admit, that’s the way I like it.

And I’m not alone, as our front page feature goes to show. Join with FaithWriters’ Magazine favorite, Corinne Smelker, as she takes us back to her childhood, when Christmas and the beach went hand in hand. With her trademark openness, Cori shares a painful family moment, that God used as a beautiful turning point for the rest of her life. "I’m Dreaming of a Beach Christmas," is not your typical Christmas story, but I know you’ll be blessed by it.

Linda Germain is another FaithWriters’ regular, and her testimony in Ascribe Greatness is one that will delight and encourage you. Writing with her typical warmth and good humor, Linda’s story, "Present Perfect," is one that you shouldn’t miss. If you need a hope infusion, then this is for you.

I’m Dreaming of a Beach Christmas
By Corinne Smelker

It had been a tedious and sticky thirteen hours in the car, with my eleven-year-old brother bugging me most of the way. "Dashing through the snow, on a one-horse open sleigh," Peter warbled.

"Shut up," I hissed! "It’s the middle of summer. Why can’t they sing songs about the beach, and Father Christmas?"

That just made him sing all the louder.

"Mum," I yelled. "Make him be quiet!"

"Do you want me to stop this car?" The voice of authority, the driver, spoke. Whoever drove the car made the rules. "We’re nearly there."

Read Complete Article...


From South Africa to Surrogacy – Meet the Remarkable Corinne Smelker
Interview by Lynda Schab

FWM: Cori, what an honor to interview a FaithWriters legend like you! There's so much I want to ask…so let's get started!

You became a member of FaithWriters in December 2003, the very same month the infamous Writing Challenge was introduced.


Read Complete Interview...

True confession time – I have to admit that I have gone from being a totally over-the-top Christmas card writer, to the opposite end of the spectrum. The decision to break with the tradition wasn’t easy, but it allowed me to take back at least one whole week each year that would otherwise have been spent frantically writing cards. Even so, little twinges of guilt do still nip at my heels from time to time, and I do wonder why that is. I also wonder if any other readers have taken the same brave step? I’d suggest writing to let me know, but perhaps that would be a bit too much like sending another card.

For everyone else, though, Al Boyce shares some thoughts about what to include with your cards this December. His article, "Christmas Letters and Christ" brings a timely challenge to use this annual opportunity to shine a light for our Savior. Oh, and for those of us who have reclaimed that card writing time, let’s make sure that we think of other creative ways to turn hearts to Jesus this year.

I think it would be fair to say that spending Christmas away from family and friends, would have to be one of the hardest things for any person to do. A newcomer to FaithWriters’ Magazine, Rev. Michael White, shares with us the year that his Christmas was exactly like that, and the way God used a young couple to warm his heart when he was feeling at his lowest. His story, "A World Away at Christmas," will warm your heart too.

Then, step back in time to 1892, as Karen Treharne shares the story of the Christmas when her Grandfather discovered that the greatest joy comes in the act of giving. "Christmas Charity" is a beautiful story and I know it will bless you.

Jump forward to the 60’s and take a trip Down Memory Lane with Dori Knight, as she remembers the Christmas she thought that her daddy had forgotten her. For every daughter (and son), "From Daddy, With Love," is a must read.

Have you ever stopped to think about the significance of the Wise Men’s gifts to baby Jesus? If you have ever wondered, or even if you have never really thought about it at all, then I really encourage you to read "Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh," by Terry Brown. This is an outstanding study, and truly A Word in Season.

Well, that’s just an introduction to what you’ll find in FaithWriters’ Magazine this month. We hope you will enjoy each page – after all, it is our very special gift to you, and it comes straight from our hearts.

So whether you are dreaming of a white Christmas, or thinking of barbeques at the beach, may you be surrounded by the peace of God, and overwhelmed with His blessings, as you celebrate the wonder of Immanuel – God with us.

Until next year,

Deb Porter
Editor, FaithWriters’ Magazine