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Preparing for Christmas - Issue 279
December 14, 2012
Hi there! ....

One of the highlights for me this week was the local Christmas Carols night. It was hosted by the local churches and was a great community night. Our family looked after the balloon stand. We twisted balloons into planes, dogs, horses, flowers and butterflies. A fun way to give the kids in our town a little gift. I love sitting there amongst the community singing Christmas carols. Unfortunately a huge wind storm blew up 10 minutes before the end and sent most people home! We also saw God's hand in protecting a dear old Christian lady who was knocked over in the storm - she could have been seriously hurt but wasn't. She is such an encourager - even as she sat in the ambulance being given the once over she was rejoicing in God's goodness and her joy in the songs that we had sung that evening that focused on Jesus.

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Preparing for Christmas

One week or so till Christmas! My preparations haven’t gone anywhere near what I would have liked. One of the things that I've been thinking about though is the reasons for our celebrations. First of all, there is the part of remembering or celebrating that Jesus came to earth; that this was the beginning of God’s plan to bring salvation to man. The second aspect is that we celebrate this as a family.

We actually celebrate a lot of things through the year as a family and over the last few years I've questioned why Christmas creates such a fuss when other celebrations don’t.

Here I am one week out and all my preparations haven’t happened. My freezer isn't stocked with Christmas baking. I haven’t ordered my ham. I haven’t decorated my house. I haven’t done any extra cleaning. I haven’t taken a family photo and I haven’t sent out any cards. I am left questioning what is important to my family to celebrate Christmas.

I would have liked to ask this question a few weeks back – but I didn't get there either! But there is time for me to think about this now. My answers should help me shape my coming week.

These are the things that are important to us:

  • To take time to think about Jesus. Not that we don’t think about Jesus every day, but as the world around us is thinking about having a good time with parties, food, and presents, we need to take the intentional step as a Christian family, to guard our hearts and remember Jesus and all that he has done. Not because Jesus doesn't want us to enjoy family times (food, presents, fun etc) but we can’t cast aside Jesus and all he asks of us, just because of a celebration. He has to be a part of it (and even more so since we are celebrating him!)

    What does Jesus ask of us – day in and day out? To love God with our whole heart, mind and soul, and to love our neighbour as ourselves. What does this look like with our Christmas celebrations?

  • To enjoy family time together. Christmas day is a time when our culture, the world we live in, takes a breath. The rush of the weeks before comes to a halt and we sit down and enjoy the people we love. This is a part of our family’s celebration too.

    This is the aspect that I need to prepare for in the coming week. How can I best prepare myself and my home to enable my family to enjoy each other?

As I sit here and reflect on these things I am brought to tears because I am overwhelmed with things that are not important. I need to clear the decks of clutter – not only the clutter of extra stuff, but the clutter of extra projects, extra information and ideas, extra expectations on myself. I need to focus on the important. I need to guard my heart to not be pressured by the urgent and give myself permission to work on the important.

How are you going with your celebration preparations? Have you been caught up in the swirl of too much to do just to make a perfect day? I have and today I’m clearing the decks to make way for the important.

I blog throughout the week at Live Life with Your Kids! This week I've written:

My Bookshop

Restoring the Heart, Mind and Soul of Christmas Do your Christmas celebrations line up with what you believe? Do your celebrations help your children learn more about Jesus?

This e-book is based on a workshop I held for a couple of years to help families see that Christmas can be a significant tradition in our family life. If we are intentional about how our family celebrates we have the opportunity to use this time to teach our children about Jesus, and his love for each one of us.

Blending Life with Lessons e-book - Does your everyday life challenge your homeschool ideas? This is my journey as I discover that it is possible to disciple my children in today's busy lifestyle.

Heart Focus Parenting book/e-book - A heart focused parent will keep their attention on their child's heart for God, instead of on external behaviours.

My Sitemap is a quick reference to all you will find on Lifestyle-Homeschool. I encourage you to have a browse around!

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Until next week

Belinda Letchford
Living life with her kids in Australia!

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About Live Life with your kids Newsletter

Live life with your Kids newsletter is about being a deliberate parent, about enjoying family life and using the opportunities that happen to teach and train your children in righteousness (right living with God). I hope that you will find regular encouragement as you live life with your kids!

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