1 Corinthians 13 Christmas Version

1 Corinthians 13 Christmas Version

1 Corinthians 13 Christmas Version If I decorate my house perfectly with plaid bows, strands of twinkling lights and shiny balls, but do not show love to my family, I’m just another decorator. If I slave away in the kitchen, baking dozens of Christmas cookies, preparing gourmet meals and arranging a beautifully adorned table at mealtime, but do not show love to my family, I’m just another cook. If I work at the soup kitchen, carol in the nursing home, and give all that I have to charity, but do not show love to my family, it profits me nothing. If I trim the spruce with shimmering angels and crocheted snowflakes, attend a myriad of holiday parties and sing in the choir’s cantata, but do not focus on Christ, I have missed the point. Love stops the cooking to hug the child. Love sets aside decorating to kiss the husband. Love is kind, though harried and tired. Love doesn’t envy another’s home that has coordinated Christmas china and table linens. Love doesn’t yell at the kids to get out of the way, but is thankful they are there to be in the way. Love doesn’t give only to those who are able to give in return but rejoices in giving to those who can’t. Love bears all things, believes all

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The Christmas Ten Commandments

The Christmas Ten Commandments

The Christmas Ten Commandments 1. Thou shalt give thy heart to Christ. Let Him be at the top of thy Christmas list. 2. Thou shalt prepare thy soul for Christmas. Spend not so much on gifts that thy soul is forgotten. 3. Thou shalt not let Santa Claus replace Christ, thus robbing the day of its spiritual reality. 4. Thou shalt not burden the shop girl, the mailman, and the merchant with complaints and demands. 5. Thou shalt give thyself with thy gift. This will increase its value a hundred fold, and he who receiveth it shall treasure it forever. 6. Thou shalt not value gifts received by their cost. Even the least expensive may signify love, and that is more priceless than silver and gold. 7. Thou shalt not neglect the needy. Share thy blessings with many who will go hungry and cold unless thou are generous. 8. Thou shalt not neglect thy church. Its services highlight the true meaning of the season. 9. Thou shalt be as a little child. Not until thou has become in spirit as a little one art thou ready to enter into the kingdom of Heaven. 10. Thou shall not forget to share your joy, peace and faith with those around you. – Author Unknown Meditation: But seek first the kingdom of God

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Christmas Love

Christmas Love

Each December I vowed to make Christmas a calm and peaceful experience. I had cut back on nonessential obligations: extensive card writing, endless baking, decorating, and even overspending. Yet I still found myself exhausted, unable to fully appreciate the precious family moments, and, of course, the true meaning of Christmas. My son, Nicholas, was in kindergarten that year. It was an exciting season for a six-year-old. For weeks, he’d been memorizing songs for his school’s Winter Pageant. I didn’t have the heart to tell him I’d be working the night of the production. Unwilling to miss his shining moment, I spoke with his teacher who assured me there would be a dress rehearsal the morning of the presentation. All parents unable to attend that evening were welcome to come then. Fortunately, Nicholas seemed happy with the compromise. So, the morning of the dress rehearsal, I filed in ten minutes early and found a seat in the cafeteria. Around the room, I saw several other parents quietly scampering to their seats. As I waited, the students were led into the room. Each class, accompanied by their teacher, sat cross-legged on the floor. Then each group, one by one, rose to perform their song. Because the public school system had stopped referring to the holiday as “Christmas” I didn’t expect anything other

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Angels in Indiana

Angels in Indiana

In September 1960, I woke up one morning with six hungry babies and just 75 cents in my pocket. Their father was gone. The boys ranged from three months to seven years; their sister was two. Their Dad had never been much more than a presence they feared. Whenever they heard his tires crunch on the gravel driveway they would scramble to hide under their beds. He did manage to leave $15 a week to buy groceries. Now that he had decided to leave, there would be no more beatings, but no food either. If there was a welfare system in effect in southern Indiana, at that time, I certainly knew nothing about it. I scrubbed the kids until they looked brand new and then put on my best homemade dress. I loaded them into the rusty old 51 Chevy and drove off to find a job. The seven of us went to every factory, store and restaurant in our small town. No luck. The kids stayed, crammed into the car and tried to be quiet while I tried to convince whoever would listen that I was willing to learn or do anything. I had to have a job. Still no luck. The last place we went to, just a few miles out of town, was an old Root Beer

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Gold, Common Sense And Fur

Gold, Common Sense And Fur

My husband and I had been happily (most of the time) married five years but hadn’t been blessed with a baby. I decided to do some serious praying and promised God that if he would give us a child, I would be a perfect mother, love it with all my heart and raise it with the word as my guide. God answered my prayers and blessed us with a son. The next year God blessed us with another son. The following year, he blessed us with yet another son. The year after that we were blessed with a daughter. My husband thought we’d been blessed right into poverty. We now had four children, and the oldest was only four years old. I learned not to ask God for anything unless I meant it. As a minister once told me, “If you pray for rain, make sure you carry an umbrella.” I began reading a few verses of the Bible to the children each day as they lay in their cribs. I was off to a good start. God had blessed me with four children and I didn’t want to disappoint him. I tried to be patient the day the children smashed two dozen eggs on the kitchen floor searching for baby chicks. I tried to be understanding when they started

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Secret Santa

Secret Santa

The man had just filled his car with gas; he was cold, wet, and ready to head for home. He opened his car door and bent down to climb inside. “Sir, sir.” He glanced in the direction of the frail voice to find a well-dressed, elderly lady attempting to get his attention. He closed the car door and walked towards her. “Can I help you, ma’am?” The older woman explained that the gas pump was not working properly, and asked if he knew what she was doing wrong. “These are new pumps and very touchy-even for me. I’ve found the easiest thing to do is forget locking them while I fill; they keep shutting off for some reason.” “Oh my! I can’t keep pressure on that handle until my tank is full. My hands don’t have much strength in them anymore.” She cast her blue eyes to the ground in frustration. “I’d be honored to fill your tank for you!” The man’s Texas accent was gentle and he gave her a little wink. “By the way, I love your British accent.” “Yes, a British accent in Texas. People always notice!” She smiled. “We just came to the States a few years ago. That’s my husband in the car.” She paused for a moment, “He has Alzheimer’s now.” “I’m so very

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