Dear friends,

The gap between Thanksgiving and Christmas on the calendar seems shorter and shorter every year. While that may be a problem time-wise it seems fitting to my heart and mind that Christmas be so full of thanksgiving.

We enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving on Prudence Island, Rhode Island with our friends, the O’Neills. A highlight of each day came in the evenings as we gathered together for combined family worship. Since we were in the Narragansett Bay, home of the first Thanksgiving day chief, Massasoit, it seemed appropriate that we read some excerpts from Of Plymouth Plantation by William Bradford. One incident that stood out to me was during the first winter when a number of the Pilgrims lay ill. Six or seven colonists who remained healthy risked their own lives to care for the sick and dying. In contrast, a number of the Mayflower sailors saw friends abandon them once sick for fear of contracting the illness themselves. Instead some of the Pilgrims cared for the sailors and provided a clear testimony of Christian love.

Bradford recorded that one sailor “confessed he did not deserve [care] at their hands; he had abused them in word in deed. ‘O!’ Saith he, “You, I now see, show your love like Christians indeed, one to another; but we let one another lie and die like dogs.’”

Christmas is a reminder that we are all like that sailor, undeserving of God’s mercy which He has shown in Christ.

Our family has been the recipient of Christian love throughout the year and in one particular way this season. In January, our oldest, Elijah, will be turning 16 and the twins will be following soon behind him! Hence, our need for a second vehicle soon. Our home church, Harvest Bible Church, got wind of our need and gave a sizable gift to help. Along with that came a Christmas gift from a supporting church in Illinois. So, on my birthday, December 16th, we added a new-to-us car!

In the office, we completed our latest story project and continue to work on several more. One I’ve been tackling is our reillustration of John Bunyan’s The Holy War. Our illustrator, Andrew Kilcup is doing a great job interpreting Bunyan’s allegory as well as my illustration notes and sketches😃 I also have hopes this month of tackling some overdue writing projects, so you can pray that happens. We are also pursuing a printing and distribution project in the country of Lebanon. BVI has much material already translated into Arabic, so it would be wonderful to see these resources distributed in that language.

Thank you for your prayers and support through another year. Grace to you in 2022!

Tom, Betsy, Elijah, Samuel, David, Jesse and Ginger.

p.s. Please watch our family video for 2021 linked below.
The boys saying “Thanks Harvest Bible Church” and getting ready to tackle some church yardwork
Luttmann and O’Neill kids posing again on Prudence Island’s Pulpit Rock where Roger Williams preached to the Narragansett Indians.
We enjoyed a prayer fellowship with friends and ministry partners at Child Evangelism Fellowship of Eastern Pennsylvania.
God answered our prayers in allowing our church to restart the in-person Good News Club at Brecht Elementary. I was able to share the Christmas Bible lesson with eight children. Pray they and many others will be able to attend the Spring club.
Samuel and David (aka The Luttmann Mountain Boys) were able to play for the residents at Fairmount Retirement Community. We’re proud of them for using their musical abilities to serve others at this time of year in particular.
We found a shortened play script version of A Christmas Carol and have enjoyed reading it together as a family and with our church connection group. Any guesses who was Scrooge?
Both our family and the Kilcups had a part in our church’s recent Christmas Lesson and Carols. You can watch the service by clicking on the picture above or the link here.
For the past eleven years Betsy has been producing a year end video for our church. It’s a great reminder to us and the church of God’s steadfast love.
Merry Christmas to you from our family! Here’s our family video for 2021.