Lesson in a cup: Wise men still seek him

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All of the Turkey is gone, the pecan pies eaten, the Christmas tree up, the floor vacuumed and for the most part towels and sheets have made it to the laundry room.

Thanksgiving was absolutely wonderful with all 20 of my family at home for five days. Chaos of the best kind.

This morning as my son left, rather than enjoy the quiet, I felt a little lonely. The house is sort of straight, I’m looking out my back door at the beautiful green, gold and red leaves, amazed once more at the beauty of autumn.

So why the lonely feeling? My mother’s heart is praying for my children.

Perhaps your tribe is the exception, but most of the time, in the commotion of gathering for the holidays, there are un-thoughtful words spoken, expectations unmet, past wounds un-healed and unknown future responsibilities weigh heavily on hearts and minds. Each of my children carry burdens that become mine as I pray for them.

That’s called family. The issue is not that all of this takes place, because it does. What makes the difference is that after all is said and done: we are family. We are for, not against, each other. When one is hurting, all the others feel the pain. Even when there is discord we know that ultimately when push comes to shove, we will pull together to help each other overcome and make it to the finish line.

As each one left to go to their homes to face their own family trials, we sent them off with prayer and hugs all around, feeling the oneness and love of family. Arriving home they began texting about old songs that are a part of our family history. The message still rang true after all these years.

 

He Didn’t Bring Us this Far to Leave Us

by the Imperials

He didn’t bring us this far to leave us

He didn’t teach us to swim to let us drown

He didn’t build his home in us to move away

He didn’t lift us up, to let us down.

(Click here to listen) 

 

Can you feel HOPE arise?img_3487

HOPE to run our race with integrity.

HOPE in the Wisdom of the Father as we seek Him.

HOPE to finish well.

Jesus Christ, the HOPE of glory!

 

Then I looked at my first cup of the season and smiled: Wise men still seek him.

 

 

My prayer for my family:

“Lord, as my children face uncertain futures and past hurts, may they truly realize that Wise men and women still seek You.

Today, I pray not for riches, fame or even joy for the holidays. I pray for wisdom. Because as wise men and women, they will seek you, and there they will find Your Peace, which is the answer to everything.”

 

Christmas, a time of Second Chances, New Beginnings!

Unto us a Child is born
Unto us a Child is born

The sign on the wall of a crisis pregnancy center where I volunteered stated, “Oh God of second chances and new beginnings, here I am again!”

I certainly know that I pray that prayer almost on a daily basis. I mess up a lot! And if the truth be known, you probably do too.

But isn’t that what the baby in the manger is all about? A second chance? A new beginning?

Let’s go back to that first Christmas so long ago. Can you envision the excitement and mystery as the angelic host watched that lowly couple trudge into Bethlehem late at night. Can you hear their whispered comments to each other as they witnessed this marvelous yet quiet birth from a heavenly perspective. “He’s giving them a second chance? Yes.  He’s sent His own Son, the beloved of Heaven, into the earth as a defenseless baby? Yes. He’s giving them a second chance. Wow! He must really, really, really, really love those humans.”

Following the still, hushed birth, the Heavens exploded with great joy! Sound and light burst forth over the mountains around Bethlehem as myriads of angelic host were shouting the familiar words: “Behold I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to ALL people. You get a second chance!” (The ‘Ruthie’ translation.)

This good news of great joy came to plain, everyday people like you and me. Shepherds were the first to know. This was good news for everyone, from the lowest to the highest. The angel said, “All People.” We get a second chance. We get a new beginning. A fresh start.

Some of my husband’s favorite verses are II Corinthians 5: 17 & 19:

IMG_1799“Anyone united with the Messiah gets a fresh start, is created new. The old life is gone; a new life burgeons! Look at it!” “God put the world square with himself through the Messiah, giving the world a fresh start by offering forgiveness of sins.” (The Message)

IMG_1763Every year about this time the world throws the most extravagant birthday party in history. We call it Christmas.  Everywhere you look from department store Santas with funny whiskers, lovely nativity scenes or trees decorated with bright lights and twinkling tinsel, the world is celebrating God’s gift of a second chance, the birth of His precious son. Maybe the ‘world’ doesn’t really understand what Christmas is about, but everyone knows there’s something different about this time of year and they all want in on the party.  So join in the celebration this year! Maybe someone will ask you what it is all about, and you get to tell them about the best birthday present in the world. Yeshua, Jesus, the Son of God.

Because everyone is looking for a second chance.

A new beginning. A fresh start.

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Merry Christmas!

Happy Birthday, Son of God!