I love Christmas!
It is a special time that we remember the birth of Jesus. We celebrate His birth with music, lights, presents, food, fun, and fellowship! I was thinking this morning of all the special days that God had in place for Israel in the Old Testament.
God placed special emphasis on the celebration days that He established for His nation. Actually, God was pretty specific on when and how Israel was supposed to celebrate.
So as I got to thinking about those celebration days....I was thankful that we have established a day that we can remember the time God sent his Son down to the earth to give mankind a special gift...the gift of His only beloved Son.
Our family begins celebrating Christmas with the start of the annual Christmas Parade the day after Thanksgiving.
At 6:00pm on a Monday evening the entire town gathers around the large pine tree next to the local library. In the surrounding darkness,with each person holding a lit candle , we sing "Silent night" together as one large choir .
It is our tradition that our family join this group as we start the celebration of the birth of Christ.
When the tree is lit, each bank, shop, and business in town, opens their doors and gives away cookies and hot chocolate as people wait for the parade to start.
As I look back over the 12 years of this annual family tradition. I have seen my family grow from 4 children when we first came to now, nine.
I remember the time when my older ones were 6, 5, 3, 2 and I was heavily pregnant with my 5th. Walking in the crowd and getting cookies was a two adult job...each one having a hand so as not to loose those bouncing laughing little ones! :)
This year, 12 years later, as we walked down the sidewalk, the teenagers were laughing with their friends, the younger ones were giggling, chatting, and bouncing down the street, and Michael and I were holding hands pushing Charity in the stroller.
I am so grateful that the many gifts that God has given me...
The next tradition involved cutting down the Christmas tree!
The very first time we cut down a tree as a family, Joshua was three and Autumn was 2. We decided that we were going to start this great family tradition! :) We must have been given the most DULL saw on the lot because it took my husband literally 20 min to saw that Christmas tree down.
He sawed and sawed and grumped... his face was red; it was some very tense moments. When the tree FINALLY fell, Autumn looked at her daddy with those big brown eyes, took her tiny hand and gently patted her daddy on the back as he was sprawled out on the ground and declared,
"Good job Daddy!!" Then it was all worth it! :)
We look back and laugh at it now, but back 15 years ago, my husband was not laughing.
This year the tree was cut by my 11 year old son, 5 seconds flat! :)
Have a Merry Christmas! I need to go feed the troops!
God reached down in love and rescued Cassandra from her sin at the age of 21: changing her life, purpose, and focus forever.