Out For Delivery by Trish

Last week I casually mentioned to my husband I would be putting the Christmas decorations up and he was fine with it. I was elated because I thought he would give me pushback about it being too soon. When he didn’t object, I ran with my plans…LOL. Now, I had ordered a new tree that was scheduled to arrive around Thanksgiving and was planning to wait until after that week to put the home together. However, I decided to go ahead and make room for the tree and decorate everything else.  Ironically enough, the day I put the decorations up, the tree arrived early and ahead of schedule. 

It was in that moment I felt God was showing me that He would deliver what I made room for. I know I’m referencing a very natural scenario but it was a lesson for me. Perhaps we’re waiting for something in our lives but we’ve not made the necessary adjustments or room in our life for what we’re anticipating.  Could it be that we miss moments/opportunities/ blessings because we’ve not made room?

I thought about the expectation of the Messiah’s arrival. Near the time of Jesus’ birth, Mary and Joseph were told there was no room in the Inn and so she gave birth to the King of Kings in a stable. Can you imagine being the Inn Keeper and realizing you had the opportunity to host our Lord and Savior but denied this incredible honor because there was no room for him?! I would like to think that if that had been me back in that time I would have had the discernment to clean out space to MAKE room. But we all know the story happened just was it was foretold and meant to happen. 

In our lives today, God has an abundance of gifts He’s wanting to deliver to us but we have a responsibility to make room and prepare for what we’re believing Him for. Let’s not delay our deliverance or blessings because we’re filled to capacity with other things that don’t belong in this season of expectation. 

Let’s do our part to make room for what is on the way and out for delivery. 

Immeasurably More Love by Sonya

“Through Christ may you know the love that surpasses knowledge-that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever! Amen.”Ephesians 3:19-21​

This Christmas season I want you to take these verses to heart and believe them. These verses really help to understand Christ’s love for us, and how deep God’s love is for us, to have His son born on Christmas to show us that. There is nothing we can do or say that will keep us from Christ’s love or make Him loves us more no matter what. Knowing Christ’s love for each of us will help you understand how Great God’s love is and it is so much greater than what we could ever imagine. This can be hard to comprehend, and I am in that season where it is difficult to think how God can love us so much just as we are. I mess up all the time and have a hard time loving myself and so my vision is blurred from how God sees me.  But when I look through God’s lens, and He tells me I am His daughter, His masterpiece, and His love is unconditional, I see that nothing I do or say will make Him view me any differently. Wow, that is mind blowing and as humans we have a hard time understanding that. Our flesh gets in the way of truly believing how much God loves us. ​

Understand God’s love through His Son this Christmas by realizing God loves us first and He loves you more than anyone else. Also God’s love is eternal and will last forever and His love is unconditional no matter what you do. Lastly His love is immeasurable.  We can’t ever put into words or describe the love He has for us because it is so remarkable. So remarkable in a way that God sent Christ to come to earth on Christmas, so He could die for us and that we could have everlasting life with Him. How amazing is this and I want to understand that kind of love this Christmas. Who is with me? Our identity needs to be rooted in Christ and fully understanding His love will set us free. Are we ready to receive the greatest Christmas gift? God’s love is immeasurably more than what we could ask for with no strings attached. ​

I have loved you with an everlasting love, therefore continued my faithfulness to you.”Jeremiah 31:3​

Now that you receive the love, go out and spread His love to those around you and let the Christmas spirit spread everywhere you go! Wishing you a Merry Christmas!

Photo Credit: Free Pik

These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things by Bombi

The holiday festivities began about a month ago here at work. A week before Thanksgiving we found ourselves lined up for a huge pre-Thanksgiving lunch, when someone muttered, “I can’t wait for the holidays to be over. Every year it’s the same thing, it gives someone a reason to be a huge jerk.” At that moment I thought about how much I disagreed with that statement. With that, my idea for this article was formed.

So here’s a short and sweet one to put some positive words out there. When Thanksgiving and Christmas come each year, sure I have those memories of the hard stuff of past Christmases, and I’m missing loved ones that have gone before me, but more than anything I have some favorites that come up and outshine the darkness. Here they are:

A few of my favorite things:

  1. The holidays have a way of bringing people together. You might not be near the one you love this season, but look around, you’ll see that there’s probably a reason why you are sitting by that co-worker at the holiday party, or why there’s an extra seat at the table because a family member is missing, maybe it’s time to ask your neighbor to come on over and hang. They could be lonely and in need of some good company and cheer.
  2. Yes our vulnerabilities can come out during this time of the year depending on where we are in life, but this can be good too. Take a seat and try watching a great movie like, “It’s a Wonderful Life.” The story of a man who gave all away and in the end reaped a reward far greater than he ever imagined is great food for thought.
  3. This is a great time to be thankful and reflect on all that God has done for you. So it’s been a rough year worldwide but didn’t He keep you? So you might have been in the line of fire from some relationship situations, but didn’t God grant you the perseverance? No matter what life season you are in, this is a great time to stop and thank God for all He has done and a great time to reflect on ways you can bless Him and His people within the upcoming year.

Well, that’s a few of my favorites. Whatever yours are, from my family to yours I wish you a very Merry Christmas and a blessed and prosperous new year!

Photo Credit: ID 66303004 © Pavel Ivanov | Dreamstime

 

This Is Us by Trish

One of my favorite shows right now is the popular TV hit, “This Is Us.” I love it because it shows the good, the bad, ugly and authentic snapshots of family.

It is inevitable that at some point during each episode I will have a personal moment where the tears flow (not stream but flow) down my face. The transparent and raw emotions experienced within the various family dynamics hit me to the core. Yet the more I watch this show, the more real it becomes to me that no matter the dynamics or situations, “it is what it is” and the family we see is what they have chosen to make of all life has dealt them.

I consider my own personal family dynamics in my home. My dream was to be married at a young age and have children immediately. My “plan” was to then adopt after having a couple of biological children and then spend my years on the mission field. I was 37 years old when I got married and my bonus daughter made me an instant mom and within one year of trying to learn the ropes of this parenting thing, she was out the door and off to college. In one year I was a newlywed, step-mom, a daughter in law and experiencing love from a set of parents who were still married to one another, saw my mom transition to heaven and then looked up at my husband realizing we were empty nesters, all in one year.  Nothing happened according to what I had planned but everything according to His plan.

You see, we as a society can spend so much energy on perfectly planning the details of our lives and if we’re not careful, we will find ourselves in a state of disappointment and frustration when “life” happens instead of our plans. But then you have the incredible opportunity to look up and see who is by your side and choose to honor the gift in what is your family. For me that includes biological family, my incredible family by marriage and then the family that the heart chose and not DNA. I realize there are good, bad and yes some ugly parts that we have gone through but THIS IS US and for every person that makes “us” complete is a treasured piece of my life that makes it so beautiful.

This Christmas, celebrate those in your life who make up your “Us” and don’t focus on what doesn’t matter but rather who matters.

Photo Credit:ID 62272784 © Wavebreakmedia Ltd | Dreamstime