Bible, Christmas, Jesus

The Shepherd

Watch this amazing short film

 The Shepherd

A Story Of The First Christmas

nativity

Merry Christmas

 

 

 

 

 

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Christmas, Jesus

Christmas Carols

Can you imagine the Christmas season without the songs?

If you take the time to focus on the lyrics you’ll find many of the beloved carols are not only beautiful but powerful and rich in theology. So don’t simply sing Christmas carols but take them to heart.

John Wesley gave some helpful instructions concerning the proper attitude to have when singing. Here are a few excerpts from his “Directions on Singing”

…Sing lustily and with good courage. Beware of singing as if you were half dead, or half asleep, but lift up your voice with strength. Be no more afraid of your voice now, nor more ashamed of its being heard, then when you sang the songs of Satan…

Above all sing spiritually. Have an eye to God in every word you sing. Aim at pleasing him more than yourself, or any other creature. In order to do this attend strictly to the sense of what you sing, and see that your heart is not carried away with the sound, but offered to God continually; so shall your singing be such as the Lord will approve…


John Wesley’s brother Charles Wesley wrote – Come Thou Long Expected Jesus


O Come O Come Emmanuel is a 9th-century hymn, originally in Latin


Both of these songs clearly speak of the longing for the arrival of Jesus. For believers today the songs also express our aching anticipation of His Return.

Share your favorite carol in the comments below.

Christmas Carols

Book Reviews, books, Christmas, Corrie ten Boom

Christmas Books

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Sharing some favorite Christmas books today


 

A Christmas Carol 

by

Charles Dickens 

Christmas books (1)


 

God Is In The Manger

by

Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Christmas books (3)


 

The Women of Christmas

by

Liz Curtis Higgs

Christmas books (2)


 

Corrie’s Christmas Memories

by

Corrie ten Boom

 

Christmas books (4)

Read more about → Corrie’s Christmas Memories

Please share your favorite Christmas books in the comments below

Christmas books

Christmas

Tis The Season

The season is here!

What came to your mind as you turned your calendar to December this year?

  • Advent                                        christmas-2961385_1920
  • Family
  • Traditions
  • Celebration
  • Shopping
  • Gift-giving
  • Decorating
  • Baking

Ideally, it is a season of wonder and joy with families gathering and celebrating together.

However, it is not always so wonderful for all. For many, the season is difficult and challenging. Christmas time can be sad, lonely, painful and a time of struggle. Some have recently suffered a great loss and some are overwhelmed by various difficulties at this particular time. Many are missing loved ones more in this season than any other time of the year.

If you’re missing someone this Christmas this song’s dedicated to you

– The Piano Guys


If this is a hard season for you, don’t put on an artificial smile and act as if you are fine. Remember many others are also feeling like you. Consider being honest with a friend, neighbor, co-worker or loved one and you may find unexpected help and comfort for your heart.


May God give us awareness of those around us who are struggling this Christmas. Let’s notice others and love them. Slow down, pay attention. Look for those Jesus wants to reach out to through your hands. Be thankful for the opportunity and you may be surprised to discover the true meaning of the season.

Thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, that he is our Father and the source of all mercy and comfort. For he gives us comfort in our trials so that we in turn may be able to give the same sort of strong sympathy to others in theirs. Indeed, experience shows that the more we share Christ’s suffering the more we are able to give of his encouragement. This means that if we experience trouble we can pass on to you comfort and spiritual help; for if we ourselves have been comforted we know how to encourage you to endure patiently the same sort of troubles that we have ourselves endured. We are quite confident that if you have to suffer troubles as we have done, then, like us, you will find the comfort and encouragement of God.

– 2 Corinthians 1:4-7    J.B. Phillips

Tis the season ♥

Your comments are welcome. Always love to hear from readers.

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Bible, Christmas, Goals, Jesus

The Shepherd’s Way

It seems that often the shepherds are overlooked. Maybe because they don’t seem as interesting as the wise men who followed the star. We picture the wise men in royal robes surrounded by mystery.

The shepherds were uneducated men of low status. They would certainly not stand out in a crowd. These ordinary shepherds bring to mind a lowly shepherd boy by the name of David. He was not special in appearance but God selected him to become King. But more importantly, the shepherds remind us that Jesus is the Great Shepherd who will be returning as King of kings and Lord of lords.


Please open your Bible to the familiar passage in the Gospel of Luke or read below in one of my favorite versions.

There were some shepherds living in the same part of the country, keeping guard throughout the night over their flocks in the open fields. Suddenly an angel of the Lord stood by their side, the splendour of the Lord blazed around them, and they were terror-stricken. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid! Listen, I bring you glorious news of great joy which is for all the people. This very day, in David’s town, a Saviour has been born for you. He is Christ, the Lord. Let this prove it to you: you will find a baby, wrapped up and lying in a manger.” And in a flash there appeared with the angel a vast host of the armies of Heaven, praising God, saying, “Glory to God in the highest Heaven! Peace upon earth among men of goodwill!”

– Luke 2:8-14   J.B. Phillips

As far as we know these shepherds were not looking for or expecting anything out of the ordinary on that night, as they were caring for their flocks. But, their lives were forever changed in a moment, when their eyes moved from watching sleeping sheep to seeing and hearing angels! 

When the angels left them and went back into Heaven, the shepherds said to each other, “Now let us go straight to Bethlehem and see this thing which the Lord has made known to us.”

 So they came as fast as they could and they found Mary and Joseph—and the baby lying in the manger. And when they had seen this sight, they told everybody what had been said to them about the little child. And those who heard them were amazed at what the shepherds said. But Mary treasured all these things and turned them over in her mind. The shepherds went back to work, glorifying and praising God for everything that they had heard and seen, which had happened just as they had been told.            Luke 2:15-20    J.B. Phillips

As soon as the angels leave, the shepherds go without delay to find Jesus. We don’t know what they said or how they reacted when they saw newborn baby Jesus lying in a manger. I am certain that they knelt in silent worship.

Next, they begin telling everyone. Then they go back to work. This amazing beyond description experience has just been theirs but yet they have to return to the same old life. What is different is inside of them. They return to work but they are glorifying and praising God!

The Shepherd’s Way

  1. Go
  2. Tell
  3. Return
  4. Glorify and praise God

Thinking about the response of the shepherds leads to some questions for us.

Are we eager to spend time with Jesus?

Are we telling others about Him?

Are we living praise-filled lives that bring glory to God?


Merry Christmas

Please click on the link below to watch a beautiful film

Joni and Friends Blog – film “The Shepherd”

 

Bible, Christmas, Corrie ten Boom

Corrie’s Christmas Memories

Corrie ten Boom shared her thoughts and memories about Christmas in her book Corrie’s Christmas Memories. She loved to share about the birth of Jesus and the visit of the shepherds.

When I think of this story it makes me so happy. Do you know why? Because I know that the baby Jesus was born in Bethlehem for the whole world — also for you and me. You and I know much more than the shepherds — or even the Wise Men — knew. We know that Jesus died on the cross for the sins of the whole world — also for your sins and mine. He will give us forgiveness when we tell Him of our sins. That is possible because Jesus not only died for us — He lives! He rose from the dead and has said I am with you till the end of the world. I believe it. I don’t understand it, but that does not matter. For at the same time He is with you and me, He is with the Father in heaven and there He pleads for us. Is that not a joy?

Jesus will come again, though not as a little baby but as a mighty King, who will make everything new.

The best is yet to come. We will see Him face-to-face.

But I won’t tell you more now. Would you like to know it all?

Then read the Bible!

Corrie ten Boom   from the book  Corrie’s Christmas Memories

corrie


 Do we know more than those for whom Christmas means only “Jingle Bells” and Santa Claus or who only prepare for Christmas by getting cards off at the right time and presents wrapped? They are trying to do their yearly duty, for they have done this ritual every year, afraid of what others will think if they don’t.

Christmas is not a duty! Jesus’ coming was a free gift to all of us. The only thing we can do is to prepare ourselves for His coming.

Christmas is a remembrance of His coming as a little baby. Let us be ready for that feast so that we can prepare others too.

What a joy to know Him, Jesus Christ, who was born in Bethlehem, died at the cross for our sins, was resurrected, and is with us always unto the end of the world.

Let us do what the shepherds did, and tell everyone who will listen.

Corrie ten Boom  from the book Clippings from My Notebook

Merry Christmas!

christmas-2961388_1920

Bible, Christmas

Follow the Shepherds

As I thought and prayed about writing a Christmas devotion, I felt God wanted me to focus on the shepherds.

Following the shepherds leads to a joyful challenge.


It seems that often the shepherds are overlooked. Maybe because they don’t seem as interesting as the wise men who followed the star. We picture the wise men in royal robes surrounded in mystery.

The shepherds were uneducated men of low status. They would certainly not stand out in a crowd. These ordinary shepherds bring to mind a lowly shepherd boy by the name of David. He was not special in appearance but God selected him to become King. But more importantly, the shepherds remind us that Jesus is the Great Shepherd who will be returning as King of kings and Lord of lords.


c8et5xvbwnu-george-hilesPlease open your Bible to the familiar passage Luke 2:8-14

As far as we know these shepherds were not looking for or expecting anything out of the ordinary on that night, as they were caring for their flocks. But, their lives were forever changed in a moment, when their eyes moved from watching sleeping sheep to seeing and hearing angels! stars-1245902_1280

When the angels left them and went back into Heaven, the shepherds said to each other, “Now let us go straight to Bethlehem and see this thing which the Lord has made known to us.”

 So they came as fast as they could and they found Mary and Joseph—and the baby lying in the manger. And when they had seen this sight, they told everybody what had been said to them about the little child. And those who heard them were amazed at what the shepherds said. But Mary treasured all these things and turned them over in her mind. The shepherds went back to work, glorifying and praising God for everything that they had heard and seen, which had happened just as they had been told.            Luke 2:15-20    J.B. Phillips

As soon as the angels leave, the shepherds go without delay to find Jesus. We don’t know what they said or how they reacted when they saw newborn baby Jesus lying in a manger. I am guessing that they knelt in silent worship.

 Next, they begin telling everybody. Then they go back to work. This amazing beyond description experience has just been theirs but yet they have to return to the same old life. What is different is inside of them. They return to work but they are glorifying and praising God!

Shepherd’s Response

  1. Go  (went as fast as the could to see Jesus)
  2. Tell everyone
  3. Return  (shepherds went back to work)
  4. Glorifying and praising God

Time for some life application:

Ask yourself 4 questions to find out if you’re responding like the shepherds

My Response

Am I going to Jesus about everything?    (prayer)

Am I telling everyone about Jesus?           (share)

Content in my present circumstances?   (content & thankful)

Is my life glorifying God?                              (praise)


The shepherds have left us with a great plan to follow. I want to be like them.

  • Eagar to spend time with Jesus
  • Sharing the gospel with everyone
  • Being truly content in my circumstances
  • Living a praise-filled life that brings glory to God

Join me in following the shepherds to Jesus ♥

May your Christmas be blessed,

Lynn

Keith & Kristyn Getty – Joy Has Dawned/Angels We Have Heard On High