King James Version (KJV)
21 … for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.
Last night, hubby and I were talking about what our day would consist of today. Our house is on the market, and we had a showing at 10 a.m.. We decided to eat breakfast and have some hubby/wife time. As I sat and thought about it, the Lord spoke to me and said, “Take tomorrow and pray together on purpose”. Now we have our prayer time, but I had never heard the Lord put it this way.
When we got back home from breakfast, we went straight into united prayer. We first talked about things we wanted to agree on, things that had been on both of our hearts and then hubby sat in his chair and I sat on the couch and our prayer time began. I soon began to walk. I would pray in the Spirit for a time and then in English for a time.
Many times after praying in the Spirit I don’t remember all of the interpretations, I only remember bits and pieces. Today, what I remember was confirmed in my routine of the day. I remember the Lord said this year every day would be like Christmas for me. I didn’t understand what God meant at the time. I didn’t know He would fully explain it later. He also told me to speak peace to my family and to my home. I did what He said. He began to tell me how Jesus is the “Prince of Peace” and He expounded on that for a bit.
My husband and I finished the prayer time and went on with the day. I had to go to the grocery store and pick up an item for supper. I live in a small town. We only have two grocery stores and one is fairly small. Compared with the other store, it is very small. The reason I say this is because I found a treasure there, in the most unlikely place. Our steps are truly ordered of the Lord, even in small ways as going to a market.
My daughter loves the commercial that has the camel that says, “It’s huuuuuump dayyyyy”. After I had picked up my one item, I was going to pay for it and I saw a t-shirt with this phrase and the picture of a camel on it. I decided to buy it for her. They only had one left, and it was the wrong size. Had it not been for that shirt, I would never have looked at this section of the grocery store. As I started toward the registers again, I saw a rack of books. What caught my eye was the title of one particular book. The title of this book is “Living Christmas Every Day”.
I could not believe my eyes! “Christmas Every Day” jumped out at me! It was exactly one of the things the Lord had spoken to me during our prayer time! I picked the book up, and when I opened it there was the next thing God had spoken to me! The subtitle was “The Prince of Peace“! That was the second thing God had told me during our prayer time. Yes, God fully had my attention at this point! Needless to say, I purchased the book!
When I got home, I could not wait to see what this book had to say about Christmas and peace! It is a daily devotional, that compares every day with Christmas. As I read, the author began to explain certain special things that take place at Christmas time. Families come together and enjoy one another, people visit the sick and elderly and give gifts they would not have had otherwise, and organizations buy toys and food items and give them to charities. But what if we did these things year round, not just one short time a year? Then every day would be like Christmas!
The author wrote, “The homeless would never feel alone and alienated by their unfortunate circumstances. The elderly would cease to feel that they no longer have a purpose in this world. Disputes between neighbors would be offset by kind deeds and words of appreciation. Families would come together more often to express their love and devotion to one another. Dear friend, isn’t that what life should be like?” I now knew, God had not meant that I would have an unexpected gift or blessing every day for the next year, but I would be the giver every day for 2014! A year of ‘paying it forward‘.
I saw a saying today that said, “A small token given is more valuable than all the good intentions without action in the world”. God isn’t looking for extravagance, He is looking for the willingness to listen and obey as He leads us into acts of love and kindness. A year of Christmas…a year of ‘paying it forward’…more than a lifetime of planting and harvesting the love of God in others, and goodwill to be the marker of all our intentions! That is not only what Christmas was meant to be, that is what the world is meant to be.
God bless you, dear reader! I will see you next time. Simply, Juliana
18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place under these circumstances: When His mother Mary had been promised in marriage to Joseph, before they came together, she was found to be pregnant [through the power] of the Holy Spirit.
19 And her [promised] husband Joseph, being a just and upright man and not willing to expose her publicly and to shame and disgrace her, decided to repudiate and dismiss (divorce) her quietly and secretly.
20 But as he was thinking this over, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, Joseph, descendant of David, do not be afraid to take Mary [as] your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of (from, out of) the Holy Spirit.
21 She will bear a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus [the Greek form of the Hebrew Joshua, which means Savior], for He will save His people from their sins [that is, prevent them from [a]failing and missing the true end and scope of life, which is God].
22 All this took place that it might be fulfilled which the Lord had spoken through the prophet,
23 Behold, the virgin shall become pregnant and give birth to a Son, and they shall call His name Emmanuel—which, when translated, means, God with us.
I love December. I have always loved the cold, the lights, the smell of Christmas trees, the time of family being together. I graduated from college 31 years ago in December. I got married at Christmas thirty years ago, and I had my first child at Christmas 26 years ago. You can imagine how much I love it!
When I was a young girl, our Christmases were extravagant. I don’t know how my grandmother did everything she did. One year we counted 21 side dishes, a turkey, a ham, and over 14 pies and cakes. That isn’t counting the Christmas candy she would make. We ate on Christmas china with Christmas cloth napkins. My grandmother cooked it and she practically cleaned it by herself! She was amazing! It took my mother and me one Christmas to figure out paper plates were the best idea!
The gifts under the tree at my grandmother’s house almost took up the entire living room. We had our family Christmas with our grandparents, so it looked massive. That didn’t count what “Santa Claus” would bring later, either!
Our Christmases have evolved over the years. The 21 salads are gone, but we all get our favorite dish! Our magnitude of desserts has been downsized as well. We still have massive gifts, even though my grandparents are with Jesus now. We now have my husband and 2 children and my brother’s wife and 4 children, along with my parents.
On Christmas it is now gumbo instead of a traditional Christmas dinner…we have that on the 23rd of December now. We still have a fireworks show Hollywood would envy on Christmas Eve. This was my grandfather’s and mother’s tradition. It is so beautiful, people stop on the side of the highway to watch the sparkling display.
What has not changed at all is the fact of why we have Christmas, and that is first and foremost important thing in my mind always. I hate it Christmas has become commercialized and an opportunity for certain greedy ones to get even richer. I want Jesus to be remembered first and foremost not only in mind but in heart.
This year I asked my husband for something different. I have wanted to do this for years and this year I did it! I told my husband I wanted nothing for Christmas. I wanted it to be about Jesus, my family being together, and our appreciation of how blessed we are. He did sneak a gift card in on me, but I got what I wanted pretty much…just knowing and understanding the meaning of Christmas was more than anyone could give me! I savored it.
Jesus and I had our time in prayer and just meditating on what it meant for Him to come to give His life for us! What Mary must have gone through, and Joseph as well and what incredible people they had to be for God to choose them to be the parents who would raise His only son. What His birth would come to and what that end of His life would mean in my life and in the lives of my loved ones and to the world! That is when the warmth of Christmas glowed in my heart and brought peace to my mind! Christmas truly is the most wonderful time of the year!
Good night and God bless you, precious reader!
26 Look at the birds of the air; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father keeps feeding them. Are you not worth much more than they?
I have already given you the recipe for Chocolate Brittle, so here is a little variety and a little extra spice! This one is also so easy to make and is perfect for your festive parties or just to serve as a dessert to your family during your holiday time! Enjoy!
2 pounds white chocolate
Line a large jelly roll pan with heavy-duty foil. Place white chocolate in a microwave safe bowl. Heat in microwave on medium setting for 5 to 6 minutes. Stir occasionally, until chocolate is melted and smooth. Place candy canes in a plastic bag, or between two pieces of waxed paper. Using a mallet or rolling pin, break the candy canes into chunks. Stir peppermint into melted white chocolate. Spread evenly in pan, and chill until set, about 1 hour (you may put it in the freezer if you are in a hurry). Break into pieces by slamming pan on counter.
The Christmas holiday is upon us (Praise God for the supreme gift of Jesus!!) and so are our Christmas celebrations! I have found new recipes on Facebook, and if I don’t save them here they tend to disappear from my wall for some unexplainable reason!! I don’t want to lose this one…I love Snickers and this is just far too yummy!! Enjoy!
Mix all ingredients together.
Chill overnight to better blend the flavors.
Serve with pretzels or graham crackers.
SOURCE: Click this website and join us here—> Get the Skinny