Saturday, December 22, 2012

Merry Christmas from our family to Yours!!

"O Holy night, the stars are brightly shining
It is the night of our dear Savior's birth
Long lay the world in sin and error pining
'Til He appeared and the soul felt its worth
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn
Fall on your knees..."

We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy and Blessed New Year!!!
Just a note: I will probably be pretty scarce around here starting after today and through the new year and just after...we will be having a lot of family things and such, so I hope you will be doing the same and enjoying some special moments with those who are closest to you!

Friday, December 21, 2012

"The Heart of Christmas"

I just quickly wanted to share a great movie idea if your needing one. We watched The Heart of Christmas the other night and I was bawling like a touching! It is pretty easy to get lost in the day to day things and loose sight of what and who are the most important things in our lives. I highly recommend watching this movie and I think it kind of goes along with what I've been talking about regarding Christmas.
If you'd like to watch the song and video go here.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

More about Christmas at our house

Today, I'm going to talk some more about what my husband and I struggle with during the Christmas season. All to often it seems like it's the blind leading the blind regarding holiday traditions (not just Christmas). So therefore, I've started looking at the origins of many of our traditions. So today I'm going to tell you about our stance on Santa Claus.

We don't buy into the Santa Claus thing with our son. I have a problem lying to him and saying someone else (who isn't even real) gave him the gift that I so thoughtfully picked out for him. I also don't want him to doubt that we're telling him the truth about God one day when he would realize that Santa was a lie. I did read a blog about a family that is teaching their son about the real St. Nicholas, who did good things for people, but they aren't telling their son that Santa gave him his gifts either. I kind of like that idea! When I grew up, I never knew about santa in the way of he got me gifts, of course I saw him on movies and on decorations and things like that. My parents never really told me about St. Nicholas though and I think that telling my son where this fictional character really came from is a good idea. Just give him the facts.
Now just a little note: after telling you I didn't put up my tree and I don't do santa claus, I just want you to know that if you do do these things, that's okay. I think this is something that everyone has to think about, study and pray about what is the right thing for their family. I just wanted to give you something to think about during this season that often gets to be more about the traditions and the commercialized side of things, rather than about that little baby that saved our world!
I think this song says so much about what we should really be celebrating!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

What is the origins of our traditions?

So today I'm going to go out on a limb and take the chance of "scaring" you all away...
As I've gotten older, I've heard more and more people around me talk about the TRUE meaning of Christmas. Now, yes, I think we all agree that the reason we celebrate Christmas is to celebrate Jesus coming to earth to ultimately give us eternal life. BUT what is the meaning behind many/most/all of our Christmas traditions?! I've questioned the real meaning of halloween for quite some time and this year took a look into what it actually originated from and decided that that is not something that our family wants to be a part of. So here it is, the bit of information that just might make you all know that I am truly CRAZY. I did NOT put my Christmas tree up this year!!!!
There, I said it....
Why? You may ask...
Well, I did a little research and came up a little disappointed.
A lot of the things that I found about the origins of Christmas trees had pagan beginnings. The trees were put up because people thought that they would keep evil spirits away. It had NOTHING to do with the birth of our Lord. There were a few accounts of Martin Luther putting up a tree with candles lit on it after seeing all the beautiful stars in the sky when he was traveling. He used the tree and candles to show his family the beauty. But to me that sounded like a good story to make us feel better about putting a pagan symbol in our living rooms.
So, I decided this year, I'm not putting it up. Although, my search didn't give me enough facts to make me go out and sell my tree (I still have it for next year, in case I decide that it can have some meaning tied to the birth of our Savior) but until I can find some better information supporting ties to our Savior I'm leaving it packed away.
Just in case you're wondering if I really did go off the deep end and not to anything Christmas-y at my house, I will let you know that I put up all my snowmen, put up my lighted garland, the stockings, a few other random Christmas decorations and of course my nativity scenes.
I'm not against celebrating the fact that my Lord came humbly to this earth to live a hard, earthly life and they die a horrible death to save ME!
 I just want to be sure that HOW I celebrate that, is honoring to my Lord, not tying to some  pagan belief from some hundreds of years ago.
And this conviction had gotten stronger and stronger as my son is getting older and getting to the point of understanding some of these things, at least on a 3 year old level. I want to be sure that he grows up knowing what Jesus did for him and me and you.
I'm hoping to do a couple more Christmas posts in the next couple if I didn't scare you off to far, come back and check it out!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

God is light

So this morning I was doing my devotion and this portion of scripture is what I read. It reminded me of a post I did a couple months ago about Evil or Good? and I thought I would share it.
"We write this to make our joy complete. This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another and the blood of Jesus, his Son purifies us from all sin."
 1 John 1:4-7
Note: emphasis is mine
How true! Jesus was our example of what the Christian life should look like and there was NO darkness in Him AT ALL! (granted we are human and we will make mistakes, but this is what we should strive for.) How much different would our day to day lives look if we truly lived this out?!

Friday, December 7, 2012

A Time for Everything

 "There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven—
A time to give birth and a time to die;
A time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted.
A time to kill and a time to heal;
A time to tear down and a time to build up.
A time to weep and a time to laugh;
A time to mourn and a time to dance.
A time to throw stones and a time to gather stones;
A time to embrace and a time to shun embracing.
A time to search and a time to give up as lost;
A time to keep and a time to throw away.
A time to tear apart and a time to sew together;
A time to be silent and a time to speak.
A time to love and a time to hate;
A time for war and a time for peace."
-Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

There is a time for everything.
 God's Word says so and God is trying His hardest to show me this.
After trying for 16 months to get pregnant, I took another one of those little tests and saw for the first time since I was pregnant with my son, two lines appear.
Relief. Excitement. Joy. Thankfulness.
Just a few of the many emotions that rushed through my husband and I when we saw those two lines. 
I only had a couple of pregnancy symptoms, which was the same for my pregnancy with Pumpkin. For almost a week, things seemed to be just as they should be. I was tired and needing to visit the bathroom more often.
Then I started spotting, which didn't cause me too great of concern because I had read many times that this could be normal. After a few days it turned to full blown bleeding and then I became terrified.
Then a few days later after continuous bleeding, after two HCG blood tests and an ultrasound, there was no other sign of pregnancy except for the lowering HCG level.
By this time, I had already pleaded with God to save my baby, then asked God that His will be done, on to asking for His strength to get me through.
He has gotten me through, but I still don't understand why we had to try for 16 months just to be devastated by the loss of the pregnancy.
I don't understand why I am still waiting to "be fruitful and multiply" all while my two and a half year old inches closer and closer to three without ANY hope for a sibling.
I. Don't. Understand.
But I do know God is here. He's been here the entire way.
Even when I want to cry when I see the newborn baby at church and I see friends/family that have their cute pregnant bellies posted on facebook, God is here.
He's telling me that there is a time for everything.
And for whatever reason, which I do not understand at this time, it is not time for us to have another child.
This doesn't make it any easier, but knowing that God is in control does make it easier.
Although it seems like there's been more times to weep and mourn lately, I have to remember that there are times to laugh and dance also.  
And they will come.
Because  "There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven—" Ecclesiastes 3:1
So whatever you are struggling with at this time, just remember to trust God because sometimes, He is the only thing that will get you through the day.

I wrote this a couple months ago, not long after my miscarriage, but wasn't sure I should post it (I didn't and don't want or need sympathy, not even many friends or family know). But it seems that maybe it does need to be out there, perhaps there are others struggling with the same thing or some other "trial" that can take comfort in knowing that there are others who are going through "trials" and that God is always there, He is my Rock and Foundation.