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Saturday, December 27, 2008

Wii Wish You a Merry Christmas!

We had a nice quiet Christmas at home this year. All 3 kids were sick, but the presents helped them stay happy. We did miss Poppy (my Dad) very much though- he couldn't come down for the sake of his own health and safety. Since we couldn't attend a Christmas Eve service, Jeff played guitar and we used homemade drums to play Little Drummer Boy and other carols. We had a nice stew dinner and hurried the kids off to bed (so that Santa wouldn't pass us by!) The kids had a sleepover in our room and woke us up right at 7. Santa had filled their stockings and left a nice thank you note for the cookies.

After stockings, we opened our Santa gifts - a Nintendo Wii and games! This was a fun and popular gift for everyone. The kids like the Mario Kart game. Jeff loves the Wii Sports. Even grandpa played!

After breakfast and some Wii time, we opened a million more presents and then ate a delicious ham dinner. Jacob read the Christmas story from the book of Matthew(NIrV) to us:

After dinner we sang Happy Birthday to Jesus and ate cake. We had a great time visiting with Granny and Aunt Judy and opening a million MORE presents this morning at Grandpa and Grandma's house.

At first it seemed strange not to travel this Christmas, but it was really WONDERFUL to have a slower paced holiday. It gave us more time to reflect on Jesus and to enjoy each other.

Jeff plays Wii Boxing

This was too funny NOT to post!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Date Day

Jacob and Keilani filled their marble jars a couple of days ago - they get marbles from us when they have great behavior or are especially helpful. Their reward this time around was a date! Jacob and Mommy went on a date ice skating. Keilani went on a date with Daddy to the Folsom Zoo. We all had a lot of fun! (There are only pics from Jacob's date because we went at the same time and Mommy had the camera.)

Friday, December 12, 2008

The Good News of Christmas

It all happened in a moment, a most remarkable moment.
As moments go, that one appeared no different from any other. If you could somehow pick it up off the timeline and examine it, it would look exactly like the ones that have passed while you have read these words. It came and it went. It was preceded and succeeded by others just like it. It was one of the countless moments that have marked time since eternity became measurable.
But in reality, that particular moment was like none other. For through that segment of time a spectacular thing occurred. God became a man. While the creatures of earth walked unaware, Divinity arrived. Heaven opened herself and placed her most precious one in a human womb.
The omnipotent, in one instant, made himself breakable. He who had been spirit became pierceable He who was larger than the universe became an embryo. And he who sustains the world with a word chose to be dependent upon the nourishment of a young girl.
God as a fetus. Holiness sleeping in a womb. The creator of life being created. God was given eyebrows, elbows, two kidneys, and a spleen. He stretched against the walls and floated in the amniotic fluids of his mother.
God had come near.
He came, not as a flash of light or as an unapproachable conqueror, but as one whose first cries were heard by a peasant girl and a sleepy carpenter. The hands that first held him were unmanicured, calloused, and dirty.
No silk. No ivory. No hype. No party. No hoopla.
Were it not for the shepherds, there would have been no reception. And were it not for a group of stargazers, there would have been no gifts.
Angels watched as Mary changed God’s diaper. The universe watched with wonder as The Almighty learned to walk. Children played in the street with him. And had the synagogue leader in Nazareth known who was listening to his sermons...
Jesus may have had pimples. He may have been tone-deaf. Perhaps a girl down the street had a crush on him or vice-versa. It could be that his knees were bony. One thing’s for sure: He was, while completely divine, completely human.
For thirty-three years he would feel everything you and I have ever felt. He felt weak. He grew weary. He was afraid of failure. He was susceptible to wooing women. He got colds, burped, and had body odor. His feelings got hurt. His feet got tired. And his head ached.
To think of Jesus in such a light is -- well, it seems almost irreverent, doesn’t it? It’s not something we like to do; it’s uncomfortable. It is much easier to keep the humanity out of the incarnation. Clean the manure from around the manger. Wipe the sweat out of his eyes. Pretend he never snored or blew his nose or hit his thumb with a hammer.
He’s easier to stomach that way. There is something about keeping him divine that keeps him distant, packaged, predictable.
But don’t do it. For heaven’s sake, don’t. Let him be as human as he intended to be. Let him into the mire and muck of our world. For only if we let him in can he pull us out.
Listen to him.
“Love your neighbor” was spoken by a man whose neighbors tried to kill him.
The challenge to leave family for the gospel was issued by one who kissed his mother goodbye in the doorway.
“Pray for those who persecute you” came from the lips that would soon be begging God to forgive his murderers.
“I am with you always” are the words of a God who in one instant did the impossible to make it all possible for you and me.
It all happened in a moment. In one moment...a most remarkable moment. The Word became flesh.
There will be another. The world will see another instantaneous transformation. You see, in becoming man, God made it possible for man to see God. When Jesus went home he left the back door open. As a result, “we will all be changed -- in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye.”
The first moment of transformation went unnoticed by the world. But you can bet your sweet September that the second one won’t. The next time you use the phrase “just a moment...,” remember that’s all the time it will take to change this world.
From "God Came Near" by Max Lucado
(available @ The Bible House, Target, Amazon, and for as low as $6.99)
You can read more of the story of Jesus in the book of Matthew