…the word has come to my mind over and in the turning of outside temperature and the preparation for the Birthday of our King.
|(This is the second year Grace and I have enjoyed making a homemade Advent calendar. )|
I've heard the word to describe the character of a person: "She's warm, and sweet, and…"
It's the word that comes to mind when I think of winter (that's odd, isn't it?), Christmas, my Mother, and home.
Did you know that one of the Hebrew words for "warmth" means "dove"?
Dove. Biblically symbolic of the Spirit of God.
He is the Comforter. Warmth. This season we are ever reminded of those blessed tidings of Comfort and Joy.
|(We start on the first day of Dec. and lead up to Christmas day.We write down a scripture passage that pertains to the birth of Jesus to read each day.)|
And I say this to a question I've asked myself:
Why do we bring in garland, drink hot chocolate, string up lights, and enjoy warm and fuzzy feelings during this season?
Is it silliness? Does it honor Christ?
Here's one answer: it's winter. Some things we associate with Christmas is simply due to it being winter. I do want to be careful not to associate the partaking of hot chocolate to be apart of treasuring Christ (though that doesn't mean I don't enjoy a cup and praise Him for it!).
Another answer is, Yes! Some of these things really are frivolous.
But then the last answer I've come to believe, is that these traditions (not all, but some), are to be an outflowing of an inward existing.
|(We don't spend a lot of money on Christmas decorations, but Mother does go out and trim lots of greens to fill the house with life!)|
* "Traditions steep sweetness when we wield them to draw our hearts to adore Christ and celebrate His given life"
If, indeed, the Spirit of God is active within us, there is apart of His nature that is comfort and warmth that will not only be apart of our character but flow out of us into our practical lives.
It is His nature and existing within us that we treasure, not the outward comforts that will one day burn. But it is also His nature that causes us to both create and enjoy warmth and joy!
In treasuring the Sprit of God within me I hope there is a warmth that penetrates cold souls I encounter.
My Mother has showcased to me that the Spirit of Christ will also, with warmth and peace, penetrate the atmosphere of your home.
Today I live in America. Today I have comfort on earth that brings great pleasure. But this year, I am convicted again to remember to treasure the True Comforter that will remain if next year I am called to be in a hut in Africa eating rice and beans instead of hot chocolate and biscotti. Because He will remain, though I am not promised nor should treasure any other comfort but Him. But I am quick to say that because of His Spirit there will be outward flowing of this inward comfort and joy, no matter my circumstances.
That is comforting.
|(Gracie and her friend, Erin, painting pinecones for the Christmas tree.)|
This isn't' the first year of Christmas that my heart has been turned to rejoicing in the joy of the Spirit of God within. It is Christmas that was the first step for the curtain of the Holy of Holies to be rent so that I may not only have access but actually be the temple for His Presence to indwell. For the Holy Spirit is not only comforter, but also power, which is the the source for victory in the life of the flower of Christ.
You can be a professional interior designer, have money for the perfectly decorated Christmas tree, and still lack any true warmth and joy. It is the Spirit of God alone who knows how to honor Christ in this season. I pray it is His nature that will cause any outflow of celebration and tradition during this season.
"And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord." (Luke 2:10-11)
|(Attempting to make a few of THESE )|
* "As you prayerfully walk through this season seeking to establish meaningful traditions that honor Christ (and possibly nix some too!), be encouraged to remember that the Spirit of God brings life, light, and clarity...And He will faithfully lead you to walk through this season in a way that reflects the beautiful, heavenly
celebration of the Gospel!"
Family update: We've been back and forth a lot this fall: three banquet tours, GEET 30th anniversary weekend, and revival meetings. We have so enjoyed this past week at home for Thanksgiving! We got home Monday and finally were done with the laundry and cleaning bus by Friday. Then we were able to do all this festive stuff this past Saturday and evenings throughout the week. We've throughly enjoyed company and fellowship with Church family over this weekend! We head out for the Fl. Prison Crusade this week, excited for what the Lord will do!
Comfort and joy to all of you as you prepare to celebrate the birth of the King!
Posted by Deborah
*Quotes taken from THIS magazine article by the Set-Apart Girl ®'s team. (the whole magazine powerful, Christ-centered reading on the Christmas season.)