Giving Gifts of Hospitality

Titus 1:8 But a lover of hospitality, a lover of good men, sober, just, holy, temperate.

1 Peter 4:9 Use hospitality one to another without grudging. As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.

When we get “dressed up” it is usually to go out somewhere. When we get our homes “dressed up” for Christmas we can’t take our home out so we instead invite others in to share our joy and our faith displayed in our home at Christmas.There is no greater joy than to gather around friends and neighbors in your home to celebrate the season.

Last Saturday we invited our friends and neighbors in to enjoy our “dressed up” home and fellowship with us.

After enjoying a buffet supper and fellowshipping over 40 of us gathered with candles to worship by filling the air in our home with the sound of the carols of old. I shared a short devotional message “The Seed of the Woman” feeding our guests some fresh manna from the Christmas story to inspire us during this season and also to encourage us in the New Year.

We laughed and laughed at our friends’ creativity as we exchanged “gag” gifts and finished the evening with a waft of romance in the air as couples danced to their special love song.

What a wonderful evening! Thanks to all our friends for warming our hearts with love and being pa

Never Judge a Gift By It’s Wrapping

It has been said that we should never judge a book by its cover. During this gift giving season I want to remind us that we should never judge a gift by its wrappings! The most expensive, the most planned and thoughtful gift ever offered to this world was placed in an old manger for a box and wrapped in lowly swaddling clothes but as we start to unwrap this precious gift we find it is tied with red ribbons dipped in the blood of the greatest love mankind has ever known.

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John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life

As Isaac Newton writes

“Were the whole realm of nature mine,

That were a present far too small;

Love so amazing, so divine,

Demands my soul, my life, my all.”

JERUSALEM THE HOLY CITY  

This day 12/6/2017 will go down in history when the USA declares Jerusalem the Capital of Israel

The Wailing Wall in Jerusalem displaying the unity of the USA and Israel

Having stood and prayed at this very same Wall this time last year I was so blessed to hear President Trump declare Jerusalem the Capital of Israel!

Genesis 12:3 And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee:

Jeremiah 3:17 At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the Lord; and all the nations shall be gathered unto it, to the name of the Lord, to Jerusalem: neither shall they walk any more after the imagination of their evil heart.

The Miracle of the Incarnation – God in the Flesh

“He was created of a mother whom He created. He was carried by hands that He formed. He cried in the manger in wordless infancy. He, the Word, without whom all human eloquence is mute.”~Augustine 

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John 1:1;13 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made

And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us.

Dressing The House to Celebrate

 

I was spending time “Dressing the house” and putting finishing touches to my Christmas tree to celebrate the season, when I took a moment to sit down with my Scottie and Westie, to reflect and be inspired as I read Jack Hayford’s Christmas Devotional where he  writes:-

“Be assured this is righteous.

I mean it! Decoration of the house at Christmas is neither a surrender to pagan traditions nor a capitulation to commercialism.

Listen….
If God commissioned angels to roll back the night and fill it with blazing light
If God provided a mighty celestial choir to serenade a few startled shepherds,
If God graced the heavens with a miracle star,
If God arranged such a memorable entry point as a feeding trough in a stable,
If God went to all this trouble to open our eyes to His entry into our world
Then we needn’t apologize for festooning our home with a few seasonal reminders!
Since the light of the world has come, lights strung across the roof only shout it from the housetop. Candles and candelabra, stars and starlight, gifts and giving, songs and sonnets, light and lightheartedness, angel cookies and wise men or ornaments – all are consistent with what transpired on our little planet two thousand years ago.
That we celebrate the memory with attention and care, the wonder-filled and wonder-full is entirely appropriate”.

CHALLENGE: As we prepare our hearts for His Advent let us also prepare our homes as a window to display the celebration and joy of the season for family, friends and neighbors as they visit our homes.