The Simple Life
Merry Christmas! There are only a couple days left to say it, and then our chance will be gone for another year. This year has been really fun. I make it a point to say Merry Christmas! to my customers at work. I ALWAYS get a Merry Christmas back, and sometimes I am even thanked for actually saying the words. Sometimes the customer says it first, too. Happy holidays is a nice expression, but only for someone who really doesn't want to celebrate the reason for the season. Just saying Merry Christmas tells everyone you acknowledge Christ's birth. And, it really did happen, documented in history. In fact, there is no other such famous person in history. In no other religion in history is God reaching out to man, but in Christianity. All other religions count on man to save himself, through good works, or being a good person. And we are such failures at that!
Jesus, Immanuel, meaning "God with us." Is it so hard to believe the story of the Bible could actually be true? That through the virgin birth a baby could be born to save the world?
We all know that there is good and evil in the world. We have seen it first hand. In an emergency would you rather count on a kind person such as Mother Teresa to be with you, or say, your average run of the mill ax murderer? Who would you count on to hold out a hand to pull you to safety? Some of us would not even trust members of our own family to give us a hand in an emergency. Sad but true.
But just what if there really were a savior? Would the God who created the universe care to send a special being to hold out that hand to all humanity? Would a mother run in front of a train to save her child if possible?
I believe He's there, like a loving brother, holding out his hand. All we have to do is reach out and accept.
That is what Christmas is about - not the gifts, nor the food, or the laughter of our loved ones, but the truth a simple kindness from Creator to creation to pull us to safety; to save us from ourselves. To help us become better than we can be on our own. Nothing that we wouldn't expect from a friend. Not so hard to believe. And yet we doubt.
If someone offered us a check for a million dollars, or even a hundred, would we reach out and accept the check? We all love the story about Virginia and the question she wanted an answer to. But wondering if Santa really exists is not the real question for this time of year. Santa is just about toys and gifts, and certainly a kind hearted old gent. But if we can believe in Santa, surely we believe in the real truth of Christmas.
Christmas a true gift to celebrate!
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A Simple Christmas to Remember.
We can't all afford gifts this year. But don't let that stop you! Bake together, and really have fun. We will be (my mother and I, and maybe if dad is not outdoors, puttering in the garage, or snowblowing) making cookies with my brother's boys. Mom said their attention will not last long, but that's okay. They like cutting out the cookies and frosting them. They don't mind eating a few, either!
And after the cookies, (and since mom and dad don't really need gifts) there are lots of ways they would rather receive a gift, like helping to paint a room, or come over once a week to help clean, or just fixing them a meal once in a while. So think of what your neighbor or family in friends need, rather that what you have to buy. You feel better giving of yourself to someone who needs a hand, and the gift of time is so much more valuable than just a gift bought at the last minute.
Last week my husband helped me repaint the kitchen. We had fun working together, listening to Christmas music and making our kitchen look great. That's not my Christmas gift, but that's what I will remember more, that he took time out of his work week to give me a hand. And, I didn't even ask him to, he just offered. That's when someone really appreciates it most.
Simple Christmas Dessert:
What if you have to work right up til Christmas and don't have lots of time for baking? Why not have a cupcake bar? You can bake the cupcakes, (or plain sugar cookies) ahead, and even freeze. You can buy plain white frosting, and make colors with a few drops of food coloring. Have several different kinds of sprinkles and put on a tray for the kids to decorate on their own. It will give them something to do.
Make a memory! When I was a kid, we often went to relatives, or they came to our house. After dinner, we'd clear the table, load the dishwasher, and play a table game. When the adults were ready, we'd all go for a walk. There was usually a lake or river to walk near, or the wood trails behind my uncles house. After all these years, I remember those memories more than opening gifts, or what we ate, tho, those were good, too. And someone always read the Christmas story after dinner, or before. There was always heartfelt prayer.
May your Christmas be as bright as my memories!
Christmas gift suggestions: To your enemy, forgiveness. To an opponent, tolerance. To a friend, your heart. To a customer, service. To all, charity. To every child, a good example. To yourself, respect. ~~ Oren Arnold
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched. They must be felt with the heart. Wishing you happiness.~~ Helen Keller
Peace on earth, goodwill toward men,