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Thursday, December 25, 2008

No Virginia, there is NO Santa Claus

No Virginia, there is no Santa Claus. That well known letter from 111 years ago was not true. Its words shifted a miracle into a figment of the imagination. Santa Claus is a fantasy, a make believe story that dims the real meaning of Christmas.

But don't be sad Virginia, because what Christmas is really about is truth and miracles and joy. Christmas represents the birth of the greatest gift that has or will ever be given. "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." John 3:16

"Santa" only gives his gifts to those who have been nice... and those who can afford gifts. But the gift that Jesus gives is there for everyone Virginia, for we have ALL been 'naughty' and "fall short of the glory of God," Romans 3:23

Dear Virginia, those gifts you find under the Christmas tree where given to you by your family and your friends who love you. They are given on a holiday that is in remembrance for the birth of Jesus Christ.

Is that not more wonderful than a fantasy that disappears like a mirage in the desert?



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And that is how I would answer that famous letter.

In our home, we celebrate Christmas in remembrance of the birth of Jesus. We understand that there is only a 1 in 365 chance that 25 December is the birth date of Jesus. But that doesn't matter, as it is only a date. We sponsor a little Maasai girl in Kenya and Jenifa's parents don't know her birthday. So we selected 17 September as her "birthday" (that is the day we started sponsoring her). The important thing is the honoring of her on that day.

And so it is the same with 25 December. It is the day we choose to honor the birth of Jesus our Savior.

I wish we could say that in our home you would find no Santa objects, but you will find a few... however it will be a Santa made by a child and given to us as a gift. Other than that: none. Our decorations are nativities, winter/snow items, items representational of the birth of Jesus - such as poinsettias, stars and so on.

Our tree ornaments are little memories we hold in our hand for a moment before we hang it on that perfect branch. Or they are something that was so beautiful it made us smile when we saw it. Or they could be a gift from a friend that we will think of as we place it on the tree.

And that is how we celebrate CHRISTmas.


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Oh Holy Night!

Words by Chappeau de Roquemaure
Translated by John S. Dwight

Oh holy night!
The stars are brightly shining
It is the night of the dear Savior's birth!
Long lay the world in sin and error pining
Till he appear'd and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn!

Fall on your knees
Oh hear the angel voices
Oh night divine
Oh night when Christ was born
Oh night divine
Oh night divine

Led by the light of Faith serenely beaming
With glowing hearts by His cradle we stand
So led by light of a star sweetly gleaming
Here come the wise men from Orient land
The King of Kings lay thus in lowly manger
In all our trials born to be our friend.
Truly He taught us to love one another
His law is love and His gospel is peace
Chains shall He break for the slave is our brother
And in His name all oppression shall cease
Sweet hymns of joy in grateful chorus raise we,
Let all within us praise His holy name.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Mary, Did You Know?

c. 1991 Word Music ( a division of Word, Inc.) and Rufus Music (admin. by Keeling & Company, Inc, Nashville, TN) Words: Mark Lowry Music: Buddy Greene

Mary, did you know
That your baby boy will one day walk on water?
Mary, did you know
That your baby boy will save our sons and daughters?
Did you know
That your baby boy has come to make you new?
This child that you've delivered
Will soon deliver you

Mary, did you know
That your baby boy will give sight to a blind man?
Mary, did you know
That your baby boy will calm a storm with His hand?
Did you know
That your baby boy has walked where angels trod?
And when you kiss your little baby
You've kissed the face of God

Mary, did you know?
The blind will see
The deaf will hear
And the dead will live again
The lame will leap
The dumb will speak
The praises of the Lamb

Mary, did you know
That your baby boy is Lord of all creation?
Mary, did you know
That your baby boy will one day rule the nations?
Did you know
That your baby boy is heaven's perfect Lamb?
This sleeping child you're holding
Is the Great I Am

Oh Mary did you know?


>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Do You Hear What I Hear?

Said the night wind to the little lamb,
"Do you see what I see?
Way up in the sky, little lamb,
Do you see what I see?
A star, a star, dancing in the night
With a tail as big as a kite,
With a tail as big as a kite."

Said the little lamb to the shepherd boy,
"Do you hear what I hear?
Ringing through the sky, shepherd boy,
Do you hear what I hear?
A song, a song high above the trees
With a voice as big as the sea,
With a voice as big as the sea."

Said the shepherd boy to the mighty king,
"Do you know what I know?
In your palace warm, mighty king,
Do you know what I know?
A Child, a Child shivers in the cold--
Let us bring him silver and gold,
Let us bring him silver and gold."

Said the king to the people everywhere,
"Listen to what I say!
Pray for peace, people, everywhere,
Listen to what I say!
The Child, the Child sleeping in the night
He will bring us goodness and light,
He will bring us goodness and light."

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Little Drummer Boy

James Pierpont. publ.1857

Come they told me
pa rum pum pum pum
A new born King to see,
pa rum pum pum pum
Our finest gifts we bring
pa rum pum pum pum
To lay before the King
pa rum pum pum pum
rum pum pum pum
rum pum pum pum
So to honor Him
pa rum pum pum pum,
when we come.

Little Baby
pa rum pum pum pum
I am a poor boy too,
pa rum pum pum pum
I have no gift to bring
pa rum pum pum pum
That's fit to give our King
pa rum pum pum pum
rum pum pum pum
rum pum pum pum
Shall I play for you!
pa rum pum pum
on my drum.

Mary nodded
pa rum pum pum pum
The ox and lamb kept time
pa rum pum pum pum
I played my drum for Him
pa rum pum pum
I played my best for Him
pa rum pum pum pum
rum pum pum pum
rum pum pum pum
Then He smiled at me
pa rum pum pum pum
me and my drum.

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