My Christmas

Most of my Christmas decorations I received from Grandma Lewis. We have her ceramic Christmas tree with lights and little mice peeking around the tree limbs. It’s always the first Christmas thing you see when you enter my home.

We also have Grandma Lewis’ angel from the 1940’s. Pretty face printed on paper, pasted on cardboard, with a fiberglass fuzzy skirt and silvery wings. It was probably very inexpensive when she bought it, but treasured by the family as they placed it every year on top of their Christmas tree. We have it packed away as a keepsake, since it is falling apart.

When I was first married, I bought cheap Christmas balls, icicles, strings of lights that burned out and were so hard to fix you just threw them away in disgust and bought new ones every other year. I have a few Avon collectible Christmas ornaments and things the kids made in church or school. But it’s funny, I don’t seem to have very many special tree ornaments to cherish like many folks do.

I have a few ceramic decorations to set around on shelves and tables to decorate. I have pretty Christmas tablecloths and placemats, which are just a nuisance in our family when we sit down at the table to eat.

And now it is Dec. 17 and my decorations are sitting in boxes in my living room and my tree is bare, but I’ll decorate before Christmas Eve just like we did when I was a kid, and then enjoy my tree till the day after New Year’s when I will box it all up till next year.

Maybe this is a good excuse to go shopping for new ornaments and decorations at the After Christmas Sales.

Reflecting on my family life, I realize that to our family Christmas means plays and programs at church and school, practicing for weeks, learning the songs and practicing the music and the speeches.

Instead of shopping and decorating our homes, we spent our lives singing Christmas carols and performing the Christmas story and that is really what Christmas is all about anyway.

Jesus What a Precious Name

She rode into town on a donkey, nine months pregnant. Her husband hadn’t wanted to make this trip, but it was a commandment by the government that each family go to the town of their ancestry to pay taxes, and since Joseph was a descendant of David, they had to go to Bethlehem.

Bethlehem was normally a tiny town, but with the influx of taxpayers, all the inns were full. Joseph must have knocked on every door in Bethlehem trying to find a place to spend the night.

Mary knew somehow that she would have the baby tonight, even though this was her first child. Within hours of the time that Joseph found them a place to stay in the stable, Mary delivered her first-born son, the baby Jesus.

As she held him in her arms, her mind went back to the day the angel Gabriel appear to her and said, “Behold you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name JESUS. “ Luke 1:31

Jesus, what a precious name. Yet there were many men in Israel named Jesus, a common name, also called Joshua.

Jesus is the English version of the Greek word, “Iesous,” pronounced ‘ee-ay-sous’.

The Hebrew word Jesus, or Joshua means ‘Jehovah is salvation.’

Joshua in the Old Testament was a type of Jesus. He led the people of Israel, those who would follow him, over the Jordan River into the Promised Land, while Jesus led His People, those who accept Him as Savior and follow Him, into the Promised Land of salvation.

Yes, there might even have been other men named Jesus who lived in Israel, there is even one mentioned in the Bible, but there was only one Jesus who was born to a virgin Mary in Bethlehem that night, to fulfill the many prophecies of the Old Testament and the words of the angel Gabriel, the messenger angel sent from God.

There was only one Jesus who died on the cross for me and for you. It was Jesus of Nazareth, son of Mary, son of God, Emmanuel God with us, the Wonderful Counselor, the Prince of Peace, the King of Kings and Lord of Lord, Christ the Lord.