I love Christmas! It is my favorite time of the year. I love the decorations, I love the cards, I love the excitement in the air, I just love it. I remember my first Christmas as a Christian. Kayla and I were living in a 650 square foot apartment in Malibu Gardens on Olive Road. I wasn't going to get a Christmas tree because we couldn't afford one. The week before Christmas I was at Wal-Mart and they had the price on their live trees cut. I got a 6 1/2 foot tree for $11! I had no decorations. My mom and aunt contributed lights and some ornaments and gave me some of my Granny's old ornaments too. People I worked with brought odds and ends from their home too. What impressed me the most about that Christmas tree was that nothing matched, each home represented a different style, but it was the most beautiful tree I had ever seen. I wish I had a picture of it. I hope I never forget the picture of that tree that is in my mind. That Christmas was the best I had; knowing and celebrating Christmas for the real reason; celebrating Christmas sober for the first time....it was amazing!! That year I was given my first Nativity. My friend Gail gave it to us. While we were excited about our tree, it was important that we not forget the reason we celebrate Christmas! Jesus came to this earth in order for Him to die and to be raised again! He died for me, He died for you, to carry our sins so that we could live with Him for eternity.....how "awe" is that?!
I know what you are thinking...it's July...why is she writing about Christmas? Well, let me tell you. Today is July 25th. Christmas is in six months. I know this because QVC is hosting, "Christmas in July." I don't watch QVC except for the 24 hours in July show and then from Thanksgiving on. Not that I can afford to buy a lot of their products, but love the decorations, the excitement, get great ideas and sometimes, find a great price. Every year I tell myself that I am not going to get wrapped up in the gifts and I won't get into the hecticness (is that even a word?)...every year I have to ask the Lord to forgive me. Every year my heart yearns to read the birth of Christ to my kids, and every year it somehow gets swept under the rug. That breaks my heart. Chris and I talked about this last month; that it is my hearts desire to have the birth of Christ read at Christmas. Since then I've started to write out the birth of Christ in a story type setting for children, but with the scriptures for reference. (Like I said, I started it, but had to stop because I have a devotional book that has to be finished first!) My hopes and prayers are that He would begin changing my heart NOW and prepare myself NOW to not get wrapped up in the worldliness of Christmas.
Blessings to you this day.
2 Corinthians 4: 7 - 10
"But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves; we are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body."