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Chris Fabry
Married to Andrea since 1982. We have 9 children together and none apart. Our dog's name is Tebow.
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Where We Are Now

After finding and remediating mold twice in our Colorado home, we abandoned ship in October 2008. Because of the high levels of exposure, our entire family was affected. After months of seeing different specialists for all of the problems, we came to Arizona to begin comprehensive treatment to rid our bodies of the toxic buildup. In August 2009 we moved into a larger home, four bedrooms, south of Tucson, north of Mexico. I am doing my daily radio program/ writing from that location. Thanks for praying for us. We really feel it.

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Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Merry Christmas! The show on Tuesday is a command performance from earlier this month, so I've reposted the following blog for you. I hope you and your loved ones have a really meaningful Christmas this year. May God bless you with unity and love and laughter.

Here's the blog from 12/4/09.

I have a new wish list this Christmas. Usually I don’t like to have someone buy clothes for me. I buy what’s comfortable. Plus, I like games and toys and gadgets and things you can actually play with after you open them up. Clothes make me yawn. Clothes are so…useful. They’re with me all the time. I want something special at Christmas.

But the more Christmases I experience, the more I wonder if I really understand what it means that God came to earth. I know that in my head. I believe it in my heart. Still, I can’t grasp it.

So as I have pondered more about the incarnation this year, I have decided to let you in on my list. We are told in scripture to put off certain things and clothe ourselves with certain other things. When Jesus came to earth, he unclothed himself of the spectacle of heaven. You and I grasp at power and position. He let it go and clothed himself in human flesh. He humbled himself and voluntarily put aside what he could easily have kept. What was his right to keep. And he did it out of obedience to the Father. He did it because of his love for you and me.

Here is what you and I need to put off. Greed. Evil desires. Impurity. Lust. Sexual immorality. Anger. Rage. Malice. Slander. Filthy language. Lying.

Does any of that sound like your workplace? Maybe a church meeting?

All of these things and more are part of the nature you and I were given by the first man, Adam. But in Christ, we have an alternative. Because he put on flesh, we can also put on a new nature.
Want to know what that’s like? What’s it like to live in a home where there is rage and anger and malice and impurity? Maybe you do.

This Christmas, and every day, we have an entirely new wardrobe available not because of Christ’s good example or a wish we may have, but because of his sacrifice. The power to put these clothes on and wear them comes from him.

Let’s deal with undergarments, for these are the first things we put on each day. The T-shirt and boxers. I call these the underwear of humility. For at the heart of every person who really wants to follow God, you have to understand who you are in relation to him. And don't make the T-shirt a V-neck, I want one that covers everything.

Now I love new socks, so I want a whole package of them. I want to shod my feet with the socks of Kindness this year. So I have humility close to me and I have kindness with every step.

Now for the dress shirt, I’d like something by Croft and Barrow (I love saying that), with a button down collar of Compassion. For slacks, might as well make them pleated and woven with patience. And even though I’ve lost weight, I need a belt. Gird me with the belt of gentleness.

So I have Humility close to me. I wear kindness on my feet. I have compassion, patience, and gentleness, all because of the new nature we are offered in Christ. All because he not only came to earth and lived as one of us and had a perfect record, he also gave himself as a ransom.

What are the results of this new clothing. Well, sure, I can look good. But even more important, where once there was strife and division in my life, I am given the ability to bear with those closest to me. I am able to forgive whatever grievances I may have with someone else. I forgive, I can have compassion, because not only am I wearing compassion, but I have been worn out by the compassion of God to me.

Now, what is missing? Ah, the sport coat. (Of course, this works with females and dresses and skirts. Or you could toss in a scarf.) Whatever you wear over all that I have just described, I put on the coat of love. This is what makes everything work together, because sometimes compassion can clash with patience. But the coat binds all of these things together. Love is the scarlet thread through this new nature, this new suit of clothing.

This is what I want to unwrap this Christmas. Not a Wii or a Nintendo or Playstation. And the good news is, they’re available to me right now. And I can unwrap them any time I’d like because of what God has done.

But it’s not enough for me to unwrap them and just to have the clothes hanging in the closet. Unless I put them on, they do me no good. Access is not what it’s about. I get the benefits of the outfit only when I wear them.

Where should I wear them? I’ll wear them when my teenager has an accident and sends my insurance higher. I’ll wear them when someone at work upsets me and treats me in an unkind way. I’ll wear them when my neighbor says bad things about my fence. I’ll wear them to church even though I’d rather leave the love at home.

There’s not a place on the planet where this new suit won’t be in style. Down in the trenches with friends who are having marriage troubles, or at a football game cheering my favorite team. They are perfectly suited for any occasion, though I dare say, there may be some places you wouldn’t want to wear this suit. You might be tempted to take it off and wear something else. My guess is, if I’m in that situation, I should either not go to that place or I should keep my new clothing on.

My prayer and hope this Christmas is that I will remember this new suit Christ offers. And that each day I will put on these clothes one piece at a time, for my sake, for the sake of those I love, and for His sake.

Enjoy the suit this Christmas with those you love and remember they never wear out.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Perfect timing, as always, Chris! My prayer this Christmas is that I will keep Christ in front of me more -- like, why am I having lunch with friends? Christ's birthday! why am I going to this party? Christ's birthday! why am I in this mall? Christ's birthday! and if I am "properly dressed" -- wow -- what a combo!

maryd123 said...

Chris, you relly brought that into everyday usage, Like Brother Lawrence & Practice the presence of God. We need to leave the water faucet on. Thank you for making the armor of God clearer for this listener.