The Miracle of Christmas
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The angel Gabriel said to Mary, "with God, nothing is impossible" (Luke1:37). 

If you believe in miracles, you believe in Christmas!  The first Christmas was such a miracle-studded event.  As if the appearance of the angel Gabriel wasn't miracle enough, he announced the birth of 2 children, one to Elizabeth, a woman thought to be barren, and the other to Mary, a virgin. 

Then more angel sightings!  Fearful shepherds saw God's glory and heard the good news of great joy proclaimed from the heavens!  At the same time, wise men also knew of Jesus' birth and traveled a great distance to find him (and they miraculously did - without GPS, cell phones or maps!).  An obscure baby born in a manger amazingly became news of great significance even posing as a threat to King Herod.  The holy family then escaped danger through the warnings in a dream.  Christmas was one miracle after another!

To each of us, Christmas holds many meanings and memories but it should always remind us of miracles.  Our God is a God of miracles, not only more than 2000 years ago but until today.  Let's fix our eyes on the light of Jesus' star so we can find the miracles that He is waiting to lovingly give us in our lives!

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Christmas Craft: Advent Wreathe

Start a heartwarming tradition with your family this year.  Make a simple advent wreathe and light a candle for every week that passes.  Each sunday during one family meal, while the candle is lighted, have everyone share a blessing, it will make your season all the brighter!  Remember to light the pink candle on the 3rd sunday of Advent. 

You may also say a simple advent prayer (see below). 

 

How to make a simple Advent Wreathe:

 

Materials:

  • 4 short clear glasses (you may re-use old coffee containers)
  • 3 violet votive candles and 1 pink one (you may use all white if you can't find these colors)
  • wire
  • trimmings - you can use old Christmas decor vines, artificial flowers, leaves and vines, paper vines (see instructions below), ribbons, twigs, fresh flowers or plants.
How to make:
  1. Position the 4 glasses 6" apart from each other on a flat surface.
  2. Form a circle shape with the wire with a diameter of 12".
  3. Center the wire shape under the glasses (keeping the position of the glasses). 
  4. Use your a ribbon or more wire to attach the glasses to the wire. 
  5. Decorate the wire by attaching trimmings evenly.  This is where your creativity is needed.  Another idea: you may place your advent wreathe in a wide brim pot so the candles are surrounded with live plants.
To make paper vines: Using green crepe paper, cut a 7" x 4 ft strip then twist until it looks like a vine.  Cut crepe shapes (pattern after real leaves) and glue onto the crepe "vine".  Since paper is highly flammable, be sure that the candles are short and safely within the confines of the glass.
 
VERY IMPORTANT:  Never leave the advent wreathe candles burning unattended.  Just light for a duration of a meal or while prayers are being said.
 
Family Advent Prayer (we encourage you to make your own too!):
Dear Lord Jesus, thank You for Your loving presence in our lives.  We invite You to come into our hearts & into our home in a deeper way this advent season.  May we wait upon You amidst this busy time, seeking Your voice always.  Give us a spirit full of hope and anticipation for all the good You have prepared for us in the days to come.  Fill our lives with Your love, joy and peace.  In Jesus' name.  Amen.  

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