Twas the Long, Dark Night Before Christmas // A Devotional for the Fourth Week of Advent, 2016

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“Because of the tender mercy of our God,

by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven

to shine on those living in darkness

and in the shadow of death,

to guide our feet into the path of peace.”

— Luke 1:78-79

Mary and Joseph walked for days and miles from their home in Nazareth to the town of Bethlehem.

They walked for 70-90 miles and for 4-7 days depending on who you ask.

Why?  Well, Luke tells us it was because the Emperor told them to.

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One of our favorite traditions is to put our tree up the weekend after Thanksgiving.  It’s a tree that has been in my family for THIRTY YEARS and the ornaments span from the childhoods of my wife’s and mine all the way up to our own children’s ornaments.  All that to say that putting the tree up means something to us.  It’s an event chocked full of tradition and memories and each year we attempt to create an experience worthy of such an occasion! Continue reading

How (Will This Be)? // A Devotional for the Third Week of Advent, 2016

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I love Christmas!

I love the trees, the lights, the presents.  I love the all the variety of nativity scenes, carols about the coming of Christ, and the profound attempts to discover joy this time of year.

I need you to know that before you read what comes next.

But (you knew it was coming didn’t you?) I’m afraid we’re missing quite a bit of what’s going on this time of year in the original Christmas Story.

One of the things our modern version of the “Christmas Story” misses out on is the uncertainty of the whole enterprise. Continue reading