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That’s the Power of Love

This third week of Advent is all about love: how love came down to redeem mankind, how love covers all sins through sacrifice… how Jesus is love. I appreciate how the love of God plays out in my life, particularly when it is revealed through friendship with other believers. I am excited to share one such friend with you all today. Deb’s authenticity is just one of the many reasons why I love her so much and I know she will bless you as she has blessed me. -Carissa When Carissa reached out to me and gave me the opportunity …

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When Jesus is Small

It’s a week before Christmas and all through the house the children are yelling and so is the spouse. The presents are wrapped but the cat ate the tinsel now vet bills are piling and the ham’s full of gristle. This year was to be different, it’s an annual goal, but stressors keep piling like your yard full of snow. Your heart wants to focus on what Christmas is for but the world, so it seems, always wants so much more.   Not everyone experiences stress during the holidays, but if we are all honest, many of us do… and …

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The View From God’s Perspective

Kids understand things often much better than we grown-ups do. Caleb handed me a pair of glasses and told me to look at the Christmas tree. I put them on and everything changed. The view showed prisms of Christmas snowflakes everywhere there was a light. How awesome! There was a pair of these lovely little view changers for his brother and sister too. We’ve had a year. If I just looked at things the way they are I’d be in a hard place. It is what it is sure fits. I could name everything “bad” that happened this year. But …

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What Is A Perfect Christmas?

I must confess the picture in my mind of my house decorated for Christmas looks far different from the actual situation at this time. In my mind there are no dishes in the sink and no sale papers on the coffee table. In my mind the mantel is absolutely perfect. In reality it’s well… it’s getting there. What used to take hours now takes several days. I feel like my theme this year is Random Acts of Décor. LOL Sometimes it feels like God’s design is Random Acts of What? We see chaos, mismatch, and a continual mess that needs …

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Heart Warming Is God’s Specialty

Last night I went to our 10 year old grandson’s Christmas concert. After the balmy weather we’ve had I was freezing. I know, it’s not even winter yet, but I am already anticipating spring. Chilled to the bone, I was wishing I had at least worn a sweater. I rode with his family to the concert and back to their house. The three grands showed me the Christmas lights in their bedrooms and I got hugs from them all and headed for the car. As I approached I heard the motor and wondered if I’d forgotten to turn it off …

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God’s Presence Unwrapped

Wrapping presents is one of my favorite things to do. I get a lot of joy out of thinking about the reaction each person will have over the gift picked especially for them. Sometimes I get busy wrapping and forget whose gift is whose. I’ve even been known to unwrap something to see what it is. At any rate wrapping a gift is fun. But watching each loved one unwrap those gifts is absolutely joyful! Oh beloved, God has already given you the best gift anyone could have. He has given you the gift of Salvation. This gift tops all …

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Victory at The Nativity

I love nativities, so when Danny found another one we had purchased on an after Christmas sale I was thrilled. I knew the grands would enjoy putting it together because it was made like LEGO’s. When they came over they were indeed excited. The box showed what it would look like and they opened it up and began to work. The only problem was the size. The pieces to this nativity were so tiny! Not regular LEGO size but so small pieces fell down into the carpet. It wasn’t going to be easy at all. It was rather complicated. They …

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Rejoice!

“How my soul praises the Lord. How my spirit rejoices in God my Savior! For He took notice of His lowly servant girl, and from now on all generations will call me blessed. For the Mighty One is holy, and He has done great things for me.” These are Mary’s words shared in Luke 1:46-49. She was a young girl, probably 15 or 16 years old, and she was ready to marry a man who was righteous and good. These are Mary’s words after the Angel of the Lord came to her one night, a night that otherwise would have …

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Making a List

Making a List   It’s what we do at Christmas –right?   The gift list The shopping list The baking list The Christmas card list The decorating list Some are then broken down into sub-lists.  The shopping list, for example, might be subdivided to grocery shopping, mall shopping, and on-line ordering. The decorating list might be inside and outside. It’s fun and frenzy. It’s happy and hectic. It’s stressful and sensational. It’s Christmas. How refreshing to note a list also included in the Christmas passage found in the Gospel of Matthew. Matthew 1:1 begins: “A record of the genealogy of …

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Glory to God, Peace to Men

“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”  Luke 2: 14     The Christmas message imparted to the shepherds that dark night 2000 years ago still resonates for us today. Jesus came. And His coming brought both glory to God and peace to men. He was – and still is – the One and Only. Only Jesus, perfect Jesus, could satisfy the righteousness requirements of the law. God could. Man should. The holy result: the God-Man, born a babe to die as a man so you and I could live. …

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He Came!

“The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel”–which means, “God with us.” Matthew 1: 23 He came. Christmas – more than anything else – is a time to joyfully celebrate the familiar, but all-so-fabulous truth that Jesus came. God came to Earth. It is marvelous…but unimaginable…. fantastic….but unfathomable… wondrous…incredible….life-changing. Isaiah 7: 14 gave us the heads up that the Savior was coming and even a couple of clues:  He would be born of a virgin and would be called Immanuel.  Matthew quoted this verse and gave us the definition …

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No Vacancy

No Vacancy: Have We Given the Innkeeper a Bad Rap?   “and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.”  Luke 2: 7   Surely, the only thing worse than making an 80-mile trek while pregnant and riding on a donkey is finding a “No Vacancy” sign greeting you upon arrival.  My Bible footnote says the journey would have taken at least three days – and some say upwards of a week. Not a pleasant trip even if you’re …