Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Jesus the One and Only

Have you noticed that we are in the throes of the Christmas Season? I've noticed. It's kind of hard to miss.

First, there was the bumper-to-bumper traffic on Route 2, where my favorite grocery store happens to be located, as well as Sears, Wal-Mart, a Mall, and Target, just to name a few. Then the giant snowman reappeared in the yard across the street. Three houses down lights went up on the house as well as lawn decorations. And last, but not least, I've been receiving umpteen-hundred emails every day from Land's End, Toys R Us, and J.C. Penney all offering me "incredible sales".

I get it. We are in the season of stressed-out shoppers, enormous electric bills and "Season's Greetings."

With so many reasons to be stressed, Scrooge-like and bah-humbug, what are you doing to remember "the reason for the season" and prepare for the coming of Emmanuel?

I'm so excited to share what I've been doing! Right after Thanksgiving, I began a new devotional, Jesus: 90 Days with the One and Only by Beth Moore (you remember my BFF, right?). I had been looking for a devotional to do in preparation for Christmas. I wanted something that would keep my focus on the coming of the Messiah.

Boy, did I find it! Naturally, Beth starts the study of the life of Jesus with his birth. In fact, the first 9 days center on his birth. That's a tenth of the book! = ) I love how Beth never lets you forget that the "Baby" Jesus is also the grown-up, crucified, risen, and seated-at-the-right-hand-of-the-Father Jesus. While keeping Jesus the Christ in mind, she draws out details in the scripture passages of Jesus the Baby I had never pondered before.

Such as "Yeshu'a" (Jesus in Aramaic) was a common name. Kind of like "John" today. A common name for an uncommon person.

And did you know "Mary's Song" (Luke 1:46-55) reflects TWELVE different Old Testament passages?! Who better to mother the Word in Flesh than a momma with His Word already hidden in her heart?

I could go on but I'll stop and just let you go get the book. You still have time, you know. Consider it a Christmas present to yourself. Or tell your husband that you've already bought your present from him this year. = )

And the best part? Not only did I find a fabulous Christmas devotional but I also found a wonderful Easter devotional. All in one book. How's that you ask? Have you noticed Easter is early in 2008? On March 23. I realize that is over 90 days from when I started the book but who are we kidding? No way was I EVER going to finish it in 90 days! I'm being realistic here. My goal is to read the final day near Easter.

So that's what I'm doing to prepare for the arrival of Baby Jesus and the Ascension of the Lamb. What are you doing for yourself and your family? Please share!


mer said...

I love this post, Stephanie! And you should be in sales because I'm ready to go buy Beth Moore's book rightthisverysecond.

I've slowed way down this season and it feels like in doing so, I've made space for Jesus to show up. I haven't done many of the things that I usually do this time of year, and I haven't even begun my shopping *gasp* I've been surprised at how uncluttered my mind/life feels right now and how letting go of all the pressure-filled things I've shouldered for so many years have ushered me into a place of really focusing on Jesus' birth, the beauty of the season of Advent, and the gift that Christ is to us.

Marc and Charity said...

I got that book/devo while we were in Dallas, but I have not started it yet. I'm looking forward to it!

Amy said...

That book sounds great. I'll have to take a look at it (at the store, I know you will be enjoying it for a while:)! This year our family is enjoying a book and set of ornaments called The Jesse Tree. Each day we read a devotional and hang an ornament. It's neat because the devotions are mostly OT concerning the line of Christ as well as prophecy. Oh, and personally, as a morning person, I have been enjoying QUIET Bible study (book of Matthew) by our Christmas tree before anyone is up in the morning. I only hope I can continue getting up early once the tree is down! :) I admit, there is added incentive!

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