WHILE SHEPHERDS WATCHED THEIR FLOCK BY NIGHT

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And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.  – Luke 2:8

The lyrics to this familiar carol are attributed to Irish hymnist and poet Laureate Nahum Tate.  It first appeared in print in 1702 and was paired with a tune called “Winchester Old”, a 16th century tune by William H. Monk in the United Kingdom.  Until 1782, it was the only Christmas carol officially sanctioned by the Church of England.  The tune we sing in the United States is a variation on a Handel aria arranged by Lowell Mason in 1821.

Can you imagine going to work as a shepherd, which, by any standard is not the most classy job in the world – and you go about your tasks thinking you’re going to have a similar day to the day before…  then BOOM – a light blinds you and a heavenly host appears before you?  A bunch of angels announce that Christ is born!  Well, I’d say that’s no ordinary day.  Who says tending sheep is boring?  It sure wasn’t boring on that day!

the-view-from-the-innAs we all know, the shepherds went to see the Baby King.  There they found Him along with heavenly hosts giving Him praise.  I’m so glad God sent the angels to the shepherds, and the shepherds got to be a part of the most important event in history!  You never know what God’s got in mind for your life – even if you are on the low end of the totem pole, my friend.

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I hope this little post has encouraged your spirit today.  If you’ve enjoyed it, I hope you’ll leave some love here in the comments.  Have a wonderful day – full of wonder.  🙂

 

 

 

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PREPARE YE THE WAY OF THE LORD

TL 12-1 PREPARE YE THE WAY OF THE LORDToday I want to know what your favorite Christmas Carol is…  each of you would give me a different answer with a different reason.  Since we can’t listen to everyone’s favorite Carol – we’ll listen to mine, which happens to be OH HOLY NIGHT.  Why do I like it best?  Well, I love the music – but it’s more than that – it tells the story of the Nativity in a poetic manner.  It just floats along with that consistent bass line until it gets to FALL ON YOUR KNEES – in that commanding fortissimo and then calms down just before the end again as if to say – this Child is not just any Child…  He is worthy of your attention.

Prepare your heart for the Christ Child today…  listen to this great Carol and really hear the words and the music – maybe for the first time.  🙂

https://youtu.be/4Zh-yR0pbmU

Once you’ve let it sink in, I want you to take your journal (or a piece of paper) and write a letter to God.  Don’t look around to see who’s watching – it’s none of their business what you’re doing.  Just do it.  Let God know what’s on your mind and what’s in your heart.  Yes, I know He already knows – but that’s not the point.  He wants you to tell Him all about it.

Now, I want you to listen to your favorite Christmas Carol (in case it is not Oh Holy Night) and keep writing to God.  There’s an old song in the Pentecostal church called JESUS ON THE MAIN LINE – it says Jesus on the Main line – tell Him what you want.  He’s your very best friend – tell Him what you want.

So do that right now.  Write a prayer to your Father, in Jesus’ Name.  🙂

 

IRON SHARPENS IRON… FRIENDSHIP

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LITTLE JUST LIKE ME

As I review the life of my Savior, I’m impressed with many things that help me realize that He really does understand the human experience first hand. He was very much a human being, but we must remember that He was always divine as well.

I’ve never met my friend Jimmy Stone. He’s a friend of mine on facebook. He has taken some of the neatest photographs and I’ve been given permission to use them for poetry I write. This photo is one of his baby booties next to a pair of his father’s baby booties. The first time I saw the photo I thought, “What a unique comparison to make. What a comfort it is to know that our parents were once children too!”

When I was a kid, I didn’t really think of my parents as younger people.  It sounds weird, but I just always thought of them as adults.  Of course the truth did eventually occur to me.  Now I know that every struggle I faced growing up, they probably faced as well.

I’m comforted by the thought that Jesus walked this earth. He came as a little baby and was raised here on this planet. Even though it was in a different culture, in a time so long ago, it was still here on earth. He lived among other human beings. He felt similar emotions and had similar experiences I suppose.

Jesus is not a Savior that came down from the sky as a scary entity with fire in His eyes. He came to earth as a tiny baby. He wants to relate to us and it was the perfect plan. Well, of course it was a perfect plan – it was God’s plan!

So on this Tuesday of Passion Week, I’m so very thankful that my Savior came to this earth as a baby and lived among people for 33 years. He understands every obstacle we face because He faced them too. ❤