Tag Archives: christmas

Hey Mom, Are You and Dad Santa?

Hey Mom, Are You and Dad Santa?

Hey Mom, Are You and Dad Santa?

Well, I had the Santa conversation this past weekend. Honestly I expected it some time ago, but somehow we’ve been able to avert it. This past week I’ve been recovering from a bout of vertigo. I decided to take the weekend to just completely rest and veg out because lying down seems to help significantly. Thankfully Hallmark has already started their Christmas movie bonanza so I had that to help with the boredom. You know how I’m a sucker for Hallmark Christmas movies! 🙂

So there I was just lying there in and out of sleep, relishing my Christmas movies, when my son comes in and lays across my bed. Then the question came…

Hey Mom, are you and dad Santa?

I knew this question would come. 

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Whether Happy or Hurting Remember Immanuel

Whether Happy or Hurting Remember Immanuel

Whether Happy or Hurting Remember Immanuel

This week I would just like to share with you a short and sweet post and reminder that Jesus is Immanuel, God with us.

I learned of some very sad news a couple of weeks before Christmas. Denise McGee had passed away (see a Celebration of Life for Denise here). Denise was the wife of Joe McGee, one of my favorite Christian teachers/speakers who I’ve referred to here on the blog on a number of occasions. My heart just broke for Joe and their 6 children and grandchildren—especially at Christmastime.

I was thinking, “How hard it must be to lose a loved one at this time of year. Will every Christmas be a negative trigger for them now?” However, one morning as I was doing my daily quiet time and devotions, I was reminded of something. Part of Christmas, the celebration of Jesus’ birth, should not only be to celebrate the human birth of Christ but to recognize and remember his deity as well.

We need to remember that one of his names is “Immanuel” which means “God with us”. God came to be with us. We are not isolated and alone. In a lonely, hurting and isolated world God said, “I want to come be with you. I want to help you. You’re not alone.”

God is Immanuel to the McGee family in their time of hurting. God is with them. So maybe Christmastime can be less painful with that in mind. God knows they are hurting and what a good time of year to remember that God is Immanuel; God is with us. Maybe He will say to them and remind them this year and every Christmas hereafter, “I am with you. I am here.”

At Christmas and all year, Jesus is Immanuel

“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.” Isaiah 7:14 (NIV)

“The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”).” Matthew 1:23 (NIV) 

Take Some Practical Steps To Remember Immanuel:

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My Addiction to Hallmark Christmas Movies

My addiction to Hallmark Christmas movies...

My Addiction to Hallmark Christmas Movies

When I asked Eric what I should write about recently, he said “your addiction to Hallmark Christmas movies”. Did you sense some sarcasm in that? Me too. Actually, it’s not a bad idea though. I’ve got to be honest. I really am addicted to Hallmark Christmas movies! Sadly, he’s not lying. I admit it. I’m a full-blown Hallmark junkie.

I’m a huge fan of the Hallmark channel and their original movies, albeit cheesy and predictable as they sometimes are. Maybe it’s the predictability that I like? I always know they will tug at my heart strings. Even if they have some sad parts, I can also always count on a happy ending. Real life doesn’t always have happy endings, so the certainty of watching one can be enticing.

Maybe the movies are an escape too? That might be where the “addiction” comes in. Addictions are often an escape from something else aren’t they? Hallmark Christmas movies can offer an escape from an often stress-ridden and drama-filled holiday season. In the movies, we can see the picture-perfect holiday season, traditions, memories and romance.

Where conviction and moderation come in

Many years ago I discovered that I was developing unrealistic expectations and discontentment in my marriage due to my obsession with romantic movies and books. I felt a strong conviction that I needed to overcome this struggle (that I previously didn’t even know I had). To overcome this, I had to start watching my intake of “romance”. When I started noticing discontentment, I knew I needed to limit how much I was reading and watching. I had to start practicing moderation (or sometimes even eliminate them completely for a while).

If I’m not careful, I can do the same thing with these Hallmark Christmas movies. It can be easy to develop unrealistic expectations of what a Christmas holiday should look like. Real life might start to pale in comparison to fictional films if I fixate on them constantly. I might start to think, “Man, my Christmas stinks compared to the picturesque traditions and moments they have.” Without caution, I might forget that…THEY AREN’T REAL!!!

My conviction may not be yours

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