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{}   *Christmas Visit* 


If you enjoy this email service, I encourage
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Be sure to check out our inspirational list just for teenagers!


Michael's updated book Heart Touchers "Life-Changing Stories of Faith, Love, and Laughter," is finally here! ($13.95)

Visit the link below to preview the book!  Personalized autographed copies are available at no extra charge and we pay the shipping for you!  An E-book version is also available for just $3.25!

Be sure to let us know who you would like it autographed for and then allow about two weeks for us to sign it and send it on its way to you.Credit card, PayPal, Checks, and Money orders accepted! The book is also available through,,, and


Good morning readers!

This will most likely be our last story before Christmas but I wanted to encourage all of you to take the time to write to Debby Giusti, the author of the today's story.  This is her first time writing for HeartTouchers, so I thought it would be appropriate to give her our patented HeartTouchers welcome!

May all of you have a wonderful Christmas!

From my family to yours,

Author Michael T. Powers


A Christmas Visit
By Debby Giusti

Following a three-year military assignment to Germany, my husband was transferred to Fort Polk, Louisiana, in 1984. Our European tour had been filled with opportunities to help others, and at no time did our outreach seem more meaningful than at Christmas.

Each year we opened our house to the men and women from my husband's unit who were unable to go home for the holidays. To my three small children, the meaning of Christmas wasn't merely Santa Claus or the toys under the tree but the opening of heart and home to others.

As the muggy days of summer shortened into fall, I wondered about the direction of our holiday outreach. My husband's office was staffed with married personnel; everyone had a home to go to on Christmas. But the stockade on post held thirty men who would have no visitors.

A family meeting sealed our commitment, and a call through channels authorized our visit. Eagerly we began our preparation. We purchased gifts: paper tablets, pens, envelopes and stamps to encourage the recipients to write notes to loved ones far away. Toilet articles, socks, jigsaw puzzles and decks of playing cards were carefully wrapped by little fingers before being tucked into larger gift boxes.

Their slippery hands greased in butter, the giggling children formed gooey cereal into festive red and green treats. With glee they wrapped each one in colorful plastic secured with festive bows. Pumpkin bread, baked in individual loaf pans, filled the house with a pungent aroma. Thick chocolate fudge, poured hot into baking pans, cooled into mouth-watering treats.

Pocket-sized New Testaments and Scripture verse cards recounting the birth of the baby Jesus were included, along with our own personal holiday greetings. Then, we sprinkled candy around the gifts before the outer boxes were covered with brightly colored paper and shiny ribbon.

On Christmas Eve, we packed the gifts into our car and left the warmth of our quarters. Riding in silence, we passed row after row of houses outlined with glowing bulbs. The children, usually bouncing with energy and anticipation, were noticeably subdued.

The final path leading to the stockade stretched dark and desolate. The dreary compound, surrounded by a tall fence topped with barbed wire, stood in stark contrast to our cozy, cheerful home.

My husband showed his identification at the guardhouse, and we were given permission to proceed. Without a sound we gathered up the boxes and entered the stockade. The men stood in formation to welcome us.

As we presented our gifts, my husband and I shook each man's hand, wishing them well, hoping they could feel our compassion and concern. While we filtered through the ranks, the children babbled their Christmas greetings, bringing smiles to discouraged faces.

That simple outreach started a family tradition. The following Christmas other families joined us, and the next year even more people became involved. I don't know if we took Jesus into the prison with us on those cold December nights; I'd like to think we found him there.

Debby Giusti

Write Debby and let her know your thoughts on her story!

Debby Giusti's debut novel, NOWHERE TO HIDE, an inspirational romantic suspense published by Steeple Hill, will be in bookstores this April.  Her second book, SCARED TO DEATH, comes out in August. Visit Debby at or email her at 

("A Christmas Visit" appears in SERVING TIME, SERVING OTHERS, Laura and Tom Lagana, Copyright 2003, and CHICKEN SOUP FOR THE CHRISTIAN SOUL II, Canfield, Hansen, and Thieman, Copyright 2006. All rights reserved.)


Inspired Audio -- Inspirational Audio Message of the Week!

Inspired Audio is a brand new offshoot of  Every week we will offer a different audio message that you can listen to right on your computer as you are surfing the net or just getting things done around the house.  Be sure to come back and visit each week!

This Week: "Learning to Wait" by Jeff Williams


Over 95,000 people have listened to popular Chicken Soup Author Michael T. Powers' free inspirational message entitled: "Breathing Life into Others".  If you aren't one of them just visit: and click on the link to listen to the free streaming audio message!


Video Imagery --Michael's Video Production Business

Dear Michael,

I just wanted to take a minute to thank you for the beautiful video you made for me! It was so special to see both of my parents in tears as they watched their children grow up in pictures before their eyes! I loved the way you made Estania's part set aside from the rest--that was the part that really got them! The music was beautiful. My mom kept blubbering, "What song is that?" I don't know how you did such a beautiful job with the video in such a short time. I really appreciate your doing it so quickly. You have a wonderful gift, and I thank God that you are using it to create such sentimental memories. I hope that I can find my niche like that in an area that I love. Your video gave us one of our most lasting Christmas memories! I hope yours was filled with moments to be treasured forever!
Silverhill, AL

Let me make you a video from your photos!
Check out my video production business
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Transfer your photographs or old home videos over to DVD or MP4 files! Give the gift that will touch your family's heart and soul.

You can join the 15,000 followers on his Facebook Nature Photography by clicking on the link above!

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