I have been reading a book that has quickly won it's way into my heart. It's called 'A Bethlehem Christmas' by Charles Swindoll. It's a book divided into three chapters. The first chapter describes the events of Christ's birth through Mary's perspective, the second chapter through Joseph's perspective, and the last chapter through the angel Gabriel's perspective. I was reading it to the boys this morning, and a familiar knot found it's way into my throat. I'd like to share a little bit of what the angel Gabriel had to say...
" I know more than any mortal could, for I stand in the very presence of God and announce His decrees to people on earth. Yet, despite the timeless, heavenly perspective I enjoy as one of His heavenly messengers, one particular mystery is beyond my ability to understand: God's persistent, unrelenting love for people. It began before time and it will never end." ~ Gabriel
Isn't that so true, and simply amazing? The birth of Jesus was a master plan for human kind. The plan was formed because of that relentless love for all of US. Some of us have chosen to look in the direction of this Savior born to us, others haven't YET... but God never gives up. He chooses to remain the same. He chooses to be persistent. He chooses to desire to win the hearts of EVERYBODY. He chooses those that are continually judged by many. He chooses those that are rejected by many. He chooses those that choose Him, but don't live as though they do. He chooses me.
I highly recommend this book to anyone desiring to gain more perspective about Christ's birth. I have nativity sets throughout my house, and after reading this book, I will never look at them the same again.
Happy Friday. ~
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
What a beautiful, memorable day we had yesterday. We knew we were supposed to get snow... but we DIDN'T think we would be getting close to TWO FEET of snow! We woke up to beauty that is totally unspeakable. It was one of those moments that you wish you could just freeze time. The boys were shrieking with joy and J and I were snuggling with a cup of coffee just enjoying our togetherness as a family. We played in it ALL DAY. We took our Christmas pictures out in it. We even hiked in it.
That's right... we packed up our backpacks and headed about a mile up the street to have lunch with friends in their cozy house. We ate yummy soup, drank hot chocolate and played some more out in the snow. They have some ROCKIN' steep hills over at their place for all of these EXTREME sport-sters.
It was a beautiful day yesterday. The kind of goodness that only God can bring to a day.
Friday, December 4, 2009
December is upon us.
I'm not even going to mention the fact that just yesterday we were basking in the sun at the pool. Well, not really... BUT it SEEMS like just yesterday. So I've been thinking about all the things I LOVE about this time of year. I've had a little more time to do that this year because for the first time in about 17 years, I'm not making outrageous amounts of peanut brittle and fudge in my kitchen. I will still be making these things to give away, but I'm not selling this year, and I've gotta tell you... it feels good!
As I've mentioned before, I love to bake. Starting about two weeks ago, my house has contained a continuous aroma of pumpkin spice something, gingerbread something, and chocolatey something. Creating yummy and beautiful goodness in my kitchen is something near and dear to my heart. So, for me... the season smells unlike any other.
The lights and colors are festive and make me happy. There's something about driving down any given street around the Christmas season and looking in people's windows. Seeing their cozy homes all lit up from the inside out. Watching the smoke rising out from their chimneys into the crisp air. The sights around me are warm and inviting.
The season of Christmas brings all sorts of emotions. I feel blessed to be a mom all during the year, but for some reason, more so around Christmas. Children bring magic to the season. Their spirits are contagious. Their smiles are genuine and bright. They are full of anticipation over all the traditions of the season and they find it hard to contain their excitement. I am happy to have my daily dose of childhood excitement, because even on the worst day of waiting in some ridiculous line, or fighting terrible traffic... my boys are ready to greet me with a hug and some story that will take every care away.
Some people get tired of Christmas music, and some don't even like it at all. I LOVE CHRISTMAS MUSIC! Isn't it true that you find yourself taken back to the age of your own childhood through the gift of Christmas music? I will be in my car listening to it, and suddenly I'll have a memory of singing this very song in front of a gymnasium full of parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles while wearing one of the many Christmas dresses that my mom made just for me. The songs of Jesus' birth always make me tear up because I LOVE to picture myself as one of those being there to witness it all. You know... like maybe one of those angels... or shepherds. The sounds of the season are sweet and full of sentiment.
'Tis the season to be grateful to experience it all. To experience the sights, smells, sounds and feelings that come from knowing that a Savior came to save ME. That a Father sent His son to die for ME. That He came in the same form as you and I... a sweet little baby. Born to a mother who loved Him with all her heart. Born with the greatest purpose... to be our King.