Today is Christmas, and I hope you are celebrating the birth of Christ with loved ones! That is what Christmas is truly all about – God lovingly humbling himself and becoming one of us, so that He could redeem us and rescue us from our spiritual darkness. May He give you faith to believe and trust in Him even more today, so that you experience His love, joy and peace!

I am with my family in Puerto Rico this year, which is feeling very strange compared to the past 42 Christmas’s I’ve had! Usually we are surrounded by a winter wonderland in the beautiful snowy midwest… but this year we decided to try something different and escape the cold! Puerto Ricans love to celebrate Christmas, so we’re enjoying ourselves immensely.

Barton Family Puerto Rico 12_15One reason we chose Puerto Rico is because my wife and I vacationed there in 2005, right after I started Barton Publishing. Now, 10 years later, we are bringing all 4 of our boys with us. Our oldest son is a junior in high school this year, so we probably won’t have too many years left with all of our boys, which I don’t like to think about… but ultimately our goal is to raise our boys to be independent God-fearing men who can be world changers!

I also understand how Christmas can be a sad day for people who have lost loved ones. December 13th, 2014, my mother died and we had our first Christmas without her. It was very hard, because she helped make Christmas beautiful. Her home cooking, sense of humor, and words of wisdom helped make life seem almost perfect. I pray that all of you who are missing a loved one, or hurting in any way, would find comfort that we have the presence of God with us at all times. He will never leave us nor forsake us. And I believe we will see our loved ones again in Heaven someday, so long as we trust Christ for eternal life.

Merry Christmas & may God bless you!