Monday, December 12, 2011

The joy not just of the season, but in your heart!


From the day of his (Jesus) birth, the forces of darkness began plotting against the Babe in the manger. Why? Because the adversary and his wicked hoards knew that this was the Child who would ultimately crush Satan and bring an end to wickedness in this world. God is so grieved over evil, that he sent his only Son to die in order that righteousness and peace, truth and love would prevail... in order that we might escape the clutches of hell and be welcomed into heaven. God permits what he hates to accomplish that which he loves.

Celebrate the defeat of darkness by singing this verse today from the Christmas carol, "Joy to the World": No more let sin or sorrow reign, nor thorns infest the ground; He comes to make His blessings known far as the curse is found!

God rest ye merry gentlemen, let nothing you dismay, remember Christ our Savior was born on Christmas Day: to save us all from Satan's power when we were gone astray, O tidings of comfort and joy!    
 From Joni Eareckson Tada

Dear Readers,
 It's the most wonderful time of the year.....there'll be much mistletoe (ing) and hearts will be glowing when loved ones are near! You all know the words. This season is filled with warmth, joy, family, and the celebration of Christ's birth. Of GOD coming down to earth to save US. Wow.
  Now, I've been working on this post for a while. I am having a very hard time deciding if I should write about how for those in orphanages, nursing homes, hospitals, the homeless, etc. this Christmas season still hurts. And sometimes it causes even more hurt. Or, I could just focus on the pure JOY of this season. And as I type that up, I think I will focus on the joy. Because anyone can walk out the door and find suffering every morning. I think the biggest trick is to find joy amidst your suffering.
   I think everyone has their own traditions that bring the most joy. Even if they're little things they still hold so much meaning! For example, one of my favorite things to do at Christmas is to go through and watch all of our Christmas cartoons and holiday specials. My family does this year after year, and it is so much fun! I also love making batches and batches of goodies for neighbors, and I have been bugging my mom to make sugar cookies and oatmeal lace cookies since September! Those two are my favorite and they are a lot of fun to make. We have a huge stock of red and green sprinkles ready, ha! 

For anyone who has ever had to spend a holiday away from home, you know how hard it is.
No matter where you are, you will always miss those small little details that make Christmas so special. That is a big reason why those in hospitals need your love and prayers especially during this season. Can you imagine Christmas dinner at the Ronald McDonald House while your child is on chemotherapy or critically ill?? Many families face that this Christmas.

This weekend my friend, Breana, and I got to help with Ballet Academy of AZ's Holiday Festival!
It was fun- I love my little ballerinas!!

This is from last Christmas. What does a thirteen year old do with her new camera? :)


Family time is my favorite part!
Excuse the man in the back...this was on our way home from our Thanksgiving trip to MS.
See- we LOVE getting ready for Christmas as soon as we can! We were all wearing Christmas shirts. :)

Sorry for having to use so many recycled pictures...our computer is messed up and it won't hold my pictures!
But there will be more Christmas to come, I promise! Now, please don't think I'm trying to give the impression that my life is perfect. I hate it when blogs look like that. But I wanted to share a little of the JOY of Christmas today. And these bring me joy! I hope they brought you some, too, as you enjoy the cold weather and hug your family today! Your blogger,

Okay- I have a prayer request! I want to start always including prayer requests in my posts, so feel free to comment and leave one and I will include it in my next post! But my brother, Mason, is having surgery today. It's been so encouraging to see all the comments of prayers on Facebook! I just wanted to mention it on here. :) Thank y'all!