Sunday, December 14, 2008

What does Christmas mean to you?

Today is the third Sunday of Advent and ironically we lit the candle of joy! While Christmas is by far my most favorite time of year...I LOVE everything about it! From the music, to the family gatherings, to the winter-like weather, to the all the beautiful Christmas decorations and Christmas lights, to the Advent season, to the warmth of everyone's spirit, and most of all for the meaning of Christmas. What does Christmas mean to you?! This has been a very humbling year for me and while this Christmas season, Allen and I have probably the least amount of money we have ever had in our bank accounts...I can tell you that this Christmas season has been one of the most blessed and joyous of all. Really for the first time (or that I can remember), this year has completely changed my outlook on what Christmas should look like and what it does look like, for me at least. Allen and I had to make a Christmas list and it was actually a lot harder than it ever has been in the past. Since I started working in the public school system, my eyes/heart/mind have been opened up to a world I honestly did not know existed. Yes, while I knew poverty existed...I just really never thought about it. To think a 4, 6, or 9 year-old will wake up on Christmas morning without any gifts under the tree, or that over Christmas break they might not have food to eat or a warm place to sleep, just breaks my heart! And to know I look those children each and every day in the face and try to understand him/her, and try to make sense of what they are going through and did go through totally makes me think different of what Christmas truly means. This year Allen and I may have very few presents under our tree but nothing will compare to the love, joy, and blessings we have received from sponsoring 2 girls, a 4 year old and a 17 year old through our church and who are currently in the custody of CPS. Not just that but the comfort in knowing, we are in favor of God and we have answered his call. This year and Christmas has been a true testament to me and when God speaks, "try me, do this unto me and I will open up the gates of Heaven for you!" The video below is written from the old Christmas song, O Little Town of Bethlehem. It is said that the night Jesus was born, everyone in Bethlehem missed out because the town of Bethlehem was sound asleep. The song is written and song by Casting Crowns. I had the privilege of watching them sing it live, it's a beautiful song and really makes you think...what will you be doing when Jesus returns? Hopefully, not sleeping ;) and while we are rushing from store to store, going from holiday party to party, and traveling to and from...take a minute to ask yourself- what does Christmas truly mean to me?!

I wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas! May Peace and Joy be with you this holiday season!!

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