Well it’s hard to believe that Christmas…yes…CHRISTMAS…is coming up fast on our horizon. Seems like just yesterday that we were blowing horns that the New Year had just come in with a bang, and now we are shopping for gifts for our families and friends. Did everyone survive Black Friday? Well, now it is time that we begin writing out our Christmas cards and wrapping all of those gifts that we saved so much money on (or so we are told) by buying from this store rather than that one.
We know that stress is a killer and ‘T’is the Season’ that can bring much of this dreaded killer into our lives if we let it, and don’t carefully plan out our time schedules. Make sure you plan on taking some time for yourself and just relax and let the worries recede.
Here is a list of some of the things that can help you to get rid of the frazzle in your dazzle this Christmas season: First thing is to take the time to make a list. Here we go:
1. Sit down with a cup of your favorite beverage and make a list of the things you need to accomplish in the next 2-3 weeks.
2. Planning is essential if you’re going to survive the holiday whirlwind.
3. If you didn’t take part in Black Friday to buy your gifts, make a list of those you plan on giving gifts to and set the dollar amount that you wish to spend for each person, and stick to that limit. Overspending during the holidays is a sure-fire stress producer, so stay away from the temptation to buy just one more gift for that particular person.
4. Write out your Christmas cards and mail them promptly….don’t wait or you might get stuck in the long lines at the post office.
5. Take a long, hot bubble bath and pamper yourself.
6. Get your calendar out and write out the dates of any Christmas plays or concerts that you have to attend for your children’s school or those that might be at the church you attend.
7. Now add to your list and to your calendar the dates and times that you have already signed up to bake something for a club you belong to or the church bake sale. Not to mention the baking that you wish to do for your family and friends. Baking and cooking takes a lot of preparation and planning. So, because of the time constraints, make a grocery list of the items you will need to purchase in order to successfully get these projects done.
8. Sit down and watch your all time favorite Christmas movies.
9. Plan on setting aside a time that you can wrap your Christmas gifts in private (especially, if you have children) or a husband that likes to peek and see what you’re doing.
10. Spend time with your friends and family and just enjoy the holiest of all Holy(i)days. Unwrap your presents and be thankful to the Lord Jesus Christ that He agreed to come down as a little baby so that He could become your Savior and mine. Hallelujah!
Now….just think about it for a minute…. after you open up your presents and you have to clean up all of the mess….in just 371 days it will be CHRISTMAS once again. God Bless!
Surfing the web, this writer came across an article written by Matt Walsh that was posted in The Blaze at http://www.theblaze.com/contributions/no-serious-christians-arent-worried-about-the-stupid-starbucks-cups/ about the supposed Starbucks Christmas cup controversy. Seriously? It is hard to believe that any Christian(s) would be upset about such a thing. Then there is the backlash happening on the web as well as the major news outlets picking up the story, and so this guy, Joshua Feuerstein, has been making the rounds on Facebook trying to stir up a controversy. If Christians should get upset about anything that Starbucks puts on their cups, it would be their iconic twin-tailed mermaid siren or Norse goddess. According to Starbucks:
Suddenly, there she was: a 16th century Norse woodcut of a twin-tailed mermaid, or Siren. There was something about her – a seductive mystery mixed with a nautical theme that was exactly what the founders were looking for…http://www.starbucks.com/blog/so-who-is-the-siren
Then this writer found this blurb:
One of Astarte’s symbols was actually a star within a circle, which was used to symbolize the planet Venus. Interestingly, two stars are found within the green circle surrounding the logo character of the former Starbucks logo, which was used to separate ‘Starbucks’ and ‘Coffee.’ Artistic depictions of the goddess often show her naked, so why was such a figure with a steamy background chosen to represent the popular coffee chain? Astarte was a goddess that was worshiped in the Eastern Mediterranean countries dating back to the bronze age and into classical times, according to http://www.unexplainable.net
As some commentators have responded: Go feed the hungry, etc. etc. which is a reference to:
Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
So what should shock Christians the more? No snowflakes on the red cups or the fact that Starbucks has chosen a snake-like goddess that has been represented as a twin-tailed Norse goddess, and which has also represented Astarte, a pagan goddess?
For Christians, the first of the Ten Commandments states very clearly:
And God spake all these words, saying, I am the Lord thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. Thou shalt have no other gods before me. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.
Great family entertainment! Where? Why at the circus, of course. The Kelly Miller Circus. This circus was founded in 1938 and is currently celebrating their 75th anniversary. This writer just attended this event, sponsored by the Pawnee Assembly of God Church in Pawnee, Illinois, October 7, 2013. The cost of the tickets purchased before the event are only $10.00 for adult and $5.00 for children.
This circus is a great family weekend fun package with free elephant rides, camel rides, pony rides etc. They performed with their tigers, elephants, llamas, dogs, zebras, clowns, high wire acrobats for an evening of entertainment… and at this price….it hard to beat this great family treat. Well recommended! Their next performance will be in Taylorville, IL on October 8, 2013.
If you would like to book this event for your civic club, church, town event etc. you can click on this link to their website: http://www.kellymillercircus.com
The author of this piece is unknown and probably has been making its way around the internet via e-mail for a long time. My copy came to me in an e-mail in March 2000, but it still gives people a smile nevertheless when they read or hear it. It’s also a great way to get people to really think about the quality of their prayer lives. If you would like to have someone pray for you at http://www.newcovenantchristianministries.org
We have all learned to live with Voice Mail; but have you ever wondered what would happen if God decided to install voice mail in heaven? Imagine hearing this when you pray:
“Thank you for calling My Father’s house, please select one of the following options:
Press 1 for requests
Press 2 for Thanksgiving
Press 3 for complaints
Press 4 for all other inquiries
I’m sorry, all of our angels are busy right now helping other sinners. However, your prayer is important to us and will be answered in the order in which it was received, so please stay on the line. If you would like to talk…
to God, press 1
to Jesus, press 2
to the Holy Spirit, press 3
to hear King David sing a Psalm while you are holding…press 4
To find out if a loved one has been assigned to a place in heaven…press 5 (enter his or her social security number), then press the # key. If you get a negative response, try area code 666.
For reservations at My Father’s house, please enter J-O-H-N followed by 3-1-6…
For answers to those nagging questions about dinosaurs, the age of the earth and/or where Noah’s Ark is, please wait until you arrive here.
Our computers show that you have already prayed today, please hang up and try again tomorrow. This office will be closed for the weekend due to a religious holiday. Please pray again on Monday after 9:30 a.m…. If you need emergency assistance when this office is closed, contact your local Pastor…
Thank you, and have a blessed day!”
As Christians soon find out, prayer is a necessary function in the life of a believer. It is a time for the believer to praise and worship their God and His Son. This is a time that can be set aside for repentance, requests, prayers for loved ones to be saved and brought into the kingdom. This is also the time to indulge in sweet conversations with the Lord Jesus, our personal Savior. It can also be a time of Bible study between the Master Teacher and student.
There are many ways to approach our prayer times, and many different ways to engage with our God in a sweet fellowship. A believer can choose any time during the day or the night (whatever is a good time) to make a permanent date with our Creator. If you will be faithful and meet at the prescribed place and time, the Lord will be there…and you will have His ear. The Lord is faithful! It’s a guarantee backed up by His Holy Name.