Thursday, December 24, 2020

Merry Christmas!

 


Merry Christmas from our home to yours!

Wishing you love and God's blessings in the New Year!


I will be taking a break from blogging next week.  Please join me in 2021 to learn my word of the year, and to share in fellowship and joy in the Lord!  May your Christmas season be merry and bright!

Monday, December 21, 2020

Advent Miracles

 


For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders.  And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. ~Isaiah 9:6

When you were a child, were Advent calendars a part of you Christmas tradition?  The certainly were in our home.  My grandmother always sent my brother and me one of these enchanting calendars just in time for the arrival of December 1st.  Needless to say, my mother made us take turns opening the window of the day.  Sometimes, it was hard to share the privilege of bringing Christmas Day just that much closer, but it was always rewarding in the end.

I carry on this tradition with my own two children, and now, with my three grand-girls.  When I order the calendar for them, I'm reminded how difficult it is to share with one sibling let alone three.  Yet, I see it as an opportunity for them to learn about the importance of taking turns, and simply to be happy for the one more day counted down until Christmas.

In our most recent Face Time conversation with daughter, Sarah, and the girls, I ask if she will be taking the Advent calendar along to son-in-law, John's, parents home for a Christmas vacation visit.  It's then that I learn something I could never have imagined, something that could only have happened through God's amazing grace.

"I hadn't thought of doing that," Sarah says, "but I will, so the girls can keep opening the windows."

"How are they doing with taking turns?"  I ask.  "It was hard enough for Daniel and you, so I'm guessing it's even rougher on them."

"What do you mean, Mom?  They each have their own calendar.  I thought you planned it that way."

"What???  No, Sarah, I only ordered one.  I only paid for one.  How in the world did three get delivered?"

"I don't know, but they were, and the girls are enjoying them so much!"

Wow!  I'm floored by this news, to say the least.  Once again, God has made Himself manifest in the ordinary, the every day events that shape our lives and give us more awareness of His presence.  In His great wisdom, He decides to give my harried daughter a break from the sibling squabbles that could potentially erupt from having to share one calendar, and possibly taint the Christmas season with a negative atmosphere.  Father always knows best!

But I will never know the angel that interceded for me and literally "stuffed the stockings" for all of my granddaughters.  However, for this miraculous act in the mundane, I'm eternally grateful.  Virginia, Savannah and Alexandra are opening a new window on the love of God, through His Son, Jesus, each and every day, anticipating the celebration of the greatest gift this world has ever known.

Our Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace has revealed Himself in life changing and unexpected ways to each of His beloved children.

May the miracle of Christmas fill your soul with joy, delight, love, and peace!

Amen!

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Faceless on Facebook

 


I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business.  Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. ~John 15:15

Friendship is one of life's most precious gifts from God.  Whatever would we do if we had no friends to count on, to empathize with, to love unconditionally, to cherish?  Our days would be lonely and depressing, indeed.

That being said, I consider all of you who follow me here on Meditations of My Heart, whether or not you ever leave a comment, to be my friends.  You've cared enough about my words and thoughts to subscribe to these posts, and that speaks volumes!

I can't deny that I've made many friends, and got reacquainted with others, during my years on Facebook.  Maybe, some of you have depended upon seeing my posts there instead of subscribing, via email, directly to my blog.  If that's the case, and you wish to continue reading what I write, I'm asking you to do so now.

You see, I've decided to break with Facebook at the end of this year.  There are many reasons for my decision, not the least of which is the company's blatant bias against those who dare to speak up for or defend anyone who doesn't agree with its liberal agenda.  This is a bold and vicious attack on our First Amendment right to free speech.  I simply do not want to be a part of any organization that undermines our Constitution.

Though I will miss seeing so many of you on Facebook, I'm hoping that meeting up with you here at the blog, or possibly on the new social media platform, MeWe, will more than make up for that.  It is my hope that you will subscribe today, and then pass on the link to Meditations of My Heart to friends and family whom you think would enjoy my writing.

That would be such a loving and meaningful Christmas gift for me, and I thank each and every one of you in advance for helping to spread the Christian-themed stories I share here with others.

May God continue to bless and keep you now and in the New Year!

Amen!

Monday, December 14, 2020

To God be the Glory


 And we know that in all things, God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. ~Romans 8:28

For many years, I choose not to send Christmas cards to friends and family.  It is due, in large part, to the overall cost of this endeavor, but also, with the advent of the e-card craze, I no longer feel compelled to indulge in the real deal.

Ironically, it is the online subversion of genuine, caring greetings that finally rouses me to take a much more personal approach.  I've made so many dear friends through blogging, and my heart simply wants to send them an affirmation of my love and appreciation for them through a snail-mail greeting card.  Oh, and that's not to dismiss my family members!  Fear not, they receive hand-signed cards, too.

A dear friend of mine recommends ordering my Christmas cards from Christian Book Distributors, so I take her up on it.  I go to Amazon, however, to make another order so I have a surplus of cards to send, or keep for the next Christmas.

The Amazon order?  It arrives in mere days.  In fact, these cards are already signed, sealed and will be delivered soon.  The CBD order?  I play the waiting and the waiting and the waiting game.

When I'm finally notified that my shipment has arrived, I am completely confounded.  Even though the packing slip reflects the promised and paid-for cards . . .


I receive this Advent devotional book by Paul David Tripp.


How does this happen???

I consider contacting CBD to complain about their mismanagement of my online order, but God blesses me with a wake-up call.  If I engage their customer service number, I'm bound to get someone in the delivery department in hot water.  Do I really want to make someone's life miserable in this season of joy?  After all, I realize, I'm grateful for receiving this unexpected gift to use during Advent 2021 for the same price I pay for the Christmas cards.  

And I do not doubt for a moment that God's hand is in it all.  He knows our needs before we ask, and always works for the good of those who love Him.

So, I will bow out and give God the glory, the One ever worthy of our thanks, praise and worship.

Amen!

Thursday, December 10, 2020

We Come Before You


 You, Lord, keep my lamp burning; my God turns my darkness into light. ~Psalm 18:28

We come before You

In wonder and worship

Expectant in every sense

For You are about

To do great things

We stand, awaiting Your Word

Spoken, reveals

The light, darkness

Flees before Your presence

Naught can stand

Against the power

Of almighty love

Come, Lord Jesus,

Restore and heal

Your city on the hill.

Amen!

Monday, December 7, 2020

Season of Joy

 


Rejoice in the Lord always.  I will say it again:  Rejoice! ~Philippians 4:4

Christmas is the season of hope, love, peace, and especially, joy.  I must confess, however, that this year, my joy-meter is having trouble cranking up to full speed.  This is understandable because due to the virus, this will be the first Christmas ever without my daughter being with me since the day she was born.  And of course, I will miss having the granddaughters and son-in-law over for the holidays, too.

Last year, my husband, Danny, and I opt not to put up a Christmas tree.  I don't know how Scrooge got to us last December, but this year, I'm having none of it!  I insist that we have a tree, fully decorated for the first time with the fancy, breakable ornaments, as I'm certain it will will bring cheer to my heart and soul.  And it does!





As I'm decorating, my mind hearkens back to precious memories of oldest granddaughter, Virginia Rose, helping with the ornaments for the first time.  I ask her in a recent Face Time chat if she remembers how old she was when she decorated with us that Christmas.  "I was seven, Gammie," she offers without hesitation.  As it turns out, she is absolutely correct!  Here are some blast-from-the-past photos of that event.






Here she is flocking herself instead of the tree!


Oh, behold the joy and wonder in Virginia's expression as she gazes at the finished product!


Yes, that's the joy I long to feel this Christmas, my friends, and I'll bet you do, too.  So let's take Paul's sage advice, and rejoice in the Lord always!

Amen!

Thursday, December 3, 2020

Advent


 

When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” ~John 8:12

 

Holy candles

Lit in hope

Peace and joy

Laced in love

Everlasting

Flames ablaze

Light profound

Darkness flees

When God surrounds

The soul and self


Amen!

Breakfast with God

  Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed. ~Mark ...