Originally posted Dec. 2016

18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost.
19 Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privily.

20 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.
21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus: for he shall save his people from their sins.
22 Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying,
23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.
24 Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife:
25 And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name Jesus.

Just a few days ago  I was visiting with a lady who was very close to full-blown panic mode because she had not yet decorated her home for Christmas.

I was happy and skipping through life virtually carefree until I spoke with her. All of a sudden, I started to feel a little stress creeping in because I began to think at least your tree is out of the box.  My tree was still in the box and very much unassembled.

Of course, I didn’t share that with her. Things started to rush through my head, such as, where are the Christmas lights and what box are the decorations in?  You see we moved in the last year, and there are still boxes stored away, and let’s just say I’m glad I am not the one who will have to look for the lights.

I am sharing this story with you today because it became quite clear to me that I was starting to assume her stress and anxiety.  Ladies during this season we can get so caught up in the presentation of everything that we miss the things that are really important. So let’s just breathe slowly, breathe in and breathe out. Just take a moment to slow down inside and just breathe. Now that I have your attention and you have calmed down let’s talk about what’s really important. Let’s talk about the precious souls that we will scurry past if we are not carefully watching for those who are truly in pain and hurting during this season. Who will you bless?

There are those who will have no one to share Christmas with, so why not set an extra place at the table and invite someone over to partake in a wonderful meal, and just to feel like a part of your family. Pick up an extra pair of gloves or a devotional or something that you can wrap and share with them. So that as your family gathers around the tree they will feel like they belong. Why not send a special card of encouragement or a call someone who may be struggling with their first Christmas after losing a family member. Become a Christmas Angel to a family that can’t afford to purchase toys for their little children. Volunteer at a shelter.  Reach out to someone this season and give a gift of love. Not to someone who will then rush out and buy you a gift also, but to someone who is deeply in need of help.

Look for the opportunities to share Jesus with those that you come in contact with. You are their link to hope, as you share the true story of Christmas and remind them why Jesus came you are giving them hope. Hope gives them a reason to keep living and to keep trying here on earth, and most importantly you are sharing the eternal hope they have in Christ for a life with Him eternally.

It doesn’t matter how much is under the tree, what matters is that we see a glimpse of Jesus this season and that others see a glimpse of Him too because He is the real Gift!

Isaiah 9:6 (KJV)
6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.

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