Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

Praying that you and your family are enjoying this holiday season. Let’s embrace the true meaning of Christmas, the birth of our Lord & Savior Jesus Christ! What a glorious day it must have been when Jesus entered the world. Angels burst into singing, wise men travel from afar to bring gifts to the baby King, and Joseph & Mary marvel at the wonderful signs.

I’m grateful to spend time with my family, receive gifts, watch my nephews open theirs, be kind to others, and sing songs. Embrace the beautiful spirit of Christmas. Share the story. It can include these but it’s much more than just presents under a tree.

Joy to the World

I’ve embraced this journey. Not knowing half of what I’d be getting into, I boldly proclaimed Yes.

Yes to letting go. Yes to allowing my heart to heal. Yes to a life of surrendering. And yes to being vulnerable. Because being truthfully honest, 2017 has been a year of surrender.

I’ve had to put aside my pride and realize that God’s guidance is needed to get through this journey. Although I have had many foolish habits, I’ve learned that God still provides. Although at times I didn’t manage my time wisely I’ve learned that God still gives grace. While scraping my knees several times I have discovered a new beauty. A beauty in crying out for help.

O Lord, I cry out to you. I will keep on pleading day by day. Psalm 88:13

There is such a beauty in crying out to God. As our loving Father, He is truly compassionate and able to bring healing. When we embrace our child-like nature, we experience God’s fathering nature.

They will be my people and I will be their God. Jeremiah 32:3

 

God sent His Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through Him. John 3:17

Imagine having one child. Pouring into that child, instilling wisdom in him, and nurturing him. Imagine a crisis taking place. A crisis so terrible that you had to choose to send your child away to another place to restore order. Would you give up your only child?

For this is how God loved the world: He gave His one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16

I began to shift my perspective when I discovered the strategy of the Father. He gave His only Son. There were not multiple children to choose from. Jesus was the only one. Christmas is all about sacrifice.

The Gift of Christmas

Christ gave up His home in heaven to become man and go through the process that led to our redemption. Christmas is more than the presents we place under the tree. It’s about giving yourself to bring healing to others. Laying down your life similar to how we lay presents down before Christmas trees. Give your all to God this Christmas. After all, he gave His all for you.  It’s a holiday of celebrating the Father’s giving nature. So in return we give of ourselves.

Ways to Give

  • Serve at a homeless shelter.
  • Donate gifts to children/families in need.
  • Be kind to others.
  • Encourage someone.
  • Volunteer at a community event.
  • Donate items to the Salvation Army.
  • Donate to organizations that are serving in your community or internationally.

Not Of This World

Maybe you are preparing for this holiday season. Silver bells… I’m sure some of you have already put up the Christmas tree & lights. Well, as you are preparing the house and getting the list together, I’d like to share this reminder with you.

You are not of this world.

Jesus’ trial before Caiaphas ended in the early hours of the morning. Then he was taken to the headquarters of the Roman governor. His accusers didn’t go inside because it would defile them, and they wouldn’t be allowed to celebrate the Passover. So Pilate, the governor, went out to them and asked, “What is your charge against this man?” “We wouldn’t have handed him over to you if he weren’t a criminal!” they retorted. “Then take him away and judge him by your own law,” Pilate told them. “Only the Romans are permitted to execute someone,” the Jewish leaders replied. (This fulfilled Jesus’ prediction about the way he would die. ) 

Then Pilate went back into his headquarters and called for Jesus to be brought to him. “Are you the king of the Jews?” he asked him. Jesus replied, “Is this your own question, or did others tell you about me?” “Am I a Jew?” Pilate retorted. “Your own people and their leading priests brought you to me for trial. Why? What have you done?” Jesus answered, “My Kingdom is not an earthly kingdom. If it were, my followers would fight to keep me from being handed over to the Jewish leaders. But my Kingdom is not of this world.” 

John 18:28‭-‬36 NLT

When questioned by Pilate, Jesus responded that His kingdom was not of this world. He knew that others could have defended Him but He remained driven. 

Imagine, being wrongfully accused by thousands and having to give a response. How would you feel and what would you do?

Jesus was sure of was His identity and the ONE who sent Him.

12/05 – Not Of This World

You are loved, treasured, and favored by God.

Because Jesus knew the Father’s love, He was able to boldly give an account of His purpose for being here.

We also must be reminded that we are here to produce good fruit and share the Good News of salvation with others.

I have told you all this so that you may have peace in Me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.

John 16:33 NLT

Be faithful over what God has given you. Do what He has called you to do wholeheartedly.

Don’t be disheartened when people do not understand you. Do not be dismayed when they wrongly accuse you. Your heavenly Father is with you and His reward is greater.

Prayer for the day

Thank you Father for Your goodness. Thank You for Your bountiful mercy and endless love. When I am overwhelmed comfort me with Your steady hand. Remind me of your unfailing love and your kindness. When others do not understand me may I be content in Your approval.

*If you’d like to learn about Salvation, click here.

‘Tis the Season

We know that it’s that time of year.
Smiles on their faces.
Hearts filled with cheer.
A new dawn has come.
Laugh everyone.
It’s time to celebrate.
Extinguish the hate.

‘Tis the season to be jolly.
Fall on your knees.
Worship the King.
Pursue Him like the three wise men.
Love and joy will He extend.

When younger we thought all about the gifts.
And boy, would we laugh at all the myths.
Like, “Santa came down our chimney so fast.”
Yeah right, the chimney we never had.
But hearts were set free.
A family were we.
Had ups and downs.
Even dressed like clowns.

The peaking through doors to spot a big gift.
The wrestle of wrapping a pogo stick.
The reruns of holiday movies and shows.
The chill down my spine when hit with snow.

The smiles on the faces.
The warm, sweet embraces.
The joy in our souls.
The heat when it’s cold.
These are the moments I cherish so dear.
Tis the season for love everywhere.

When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy.  And going into the house they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh.
-Matthew 2:10,11 NLT

♡Happy Birthday Caden♢

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Photo courtesy of Shantel G. All rights reserved.