My family and I bring the ornament boxes, the decorations and the tree down from the attic and my home is chaos for a few days. I started this year thinking I would try to keep the tree in white lights only and a silver and gold theme; classy and beautiful with a bit of bling and much more mature than the homemade ornaments and eclectic pieces gather over fifty years.
That did not last long! As I pulled out each ornament I couldn't stand to not have each one on the tree. There are memories tied to each one. They do not lend themselves to the eye-catching black and white theme that I loved over at AKA Design or the country feel of Stone Gable or the all white beauty at French Country Cottage. I aspire to someday do something that beautiful in our home but there is the traditional, sentimental side that cannot just leave my treasures in the boxes, forgotten.
So, out they came- one by one, and they all ended up on the tree.
|Made by my mom a few years before she died.|
|Bits of my teen years in Germany|
|From a childhood tree when I was very little.|
Yes, even the Christmas chickens made it in the tree, again.
I did skip the colored lights this year. I thought the white lights looked a bit more grown up and clean. At least I can hold on to a bit of the dream.
Everything in the living room got a bit of a Christmas makeover. I tried not to over do but hey, it's Christmas. Extravagance is acceptable at this time of the year!
I did manage to keep to my bling, silver and gold thing in the dining room, for the most part.
And the kitchen...
|Hot cocoa and coffee station|
Next year probably will find me thumbing through magazines, scouring blogs and making promises as I review my Pinterest saves. Maybe I should have two trees! One thing is for sure...at least of them will have colored lights!
Now that the house is ready I can set my thoughts on what Christmas really is all about.
Christmas is about Jesus, the Christ of God. He did not come wrapped in beautiful wrapping or decorated in the finest array. He was wrapped in rags; swaddling clothes. He did not lay his tiny, magnificent head on a soft bed in a king's nursery but rather in a trough that was meant to feed animals. There was no pomp initiated by the rulers of the day to welcome this prophesied Savior. There was only a young mother and her husband that knew he was not the father of this baby..... and all the heavenly host! It was they who preached to the shepherds in the fields. The shepherds rushed to see this thing the angels had declared to them. They saw the Promise of the Father! They saw, with eyes of faith, the One who would secure for them a righteousness that could never be earned-the perfection that God, the Father, requires for entrance into the gates of heaven.
Wouldn't it be so sweet if that were the whole of the story?
But, Scripture tells us more. We are told that not only can we not keep law of God perfectly but that we don't even desire to...in fact, we break the laws of God regularly and willfully and that is called sin. Scripture also tells us the wages of sin is death and that EVERYONE has sinned. Death is not merely a physical death, which is the evidence of our sin, but also a spiritual death that separates us from the Almighty-without exception. We are bankrupt and without hope.
But God....being great in mercy sent his Son, in the form of man, to live according to all the law of God-perfectly. And here is the hard thing to remember: that baby lying in a manger, represented so sweetly in my nativity...he came to die ... not because of sin he committed but because of mine and yours. The Father poured out his wrath for our sin on his own Son! The death of Jesus satisfied the penalty for the sin of all those who would believe in him. And we know that it was an acceptable sacrifice because God, the Father raised him from that dead. That is still not enough, though. Remember we have to be perfect to see heaven. A paid debt does not wipe away the fact that we had a debt or that I continue to break God's laws thus accumulating more debt. And here is the "ah-ha" that brought me a peace that knows no limits, remember the perfect life Jesus lived? He gave that to me. He wrapped me in his righteousness and presents me to the Father as his bride, clothed in white, without spot or wrinkle or blemish and I am accepted.
That is Christmas. Maybe that is why I am so enamored with the idea of white and shiny Christmas decor. Maybe that is why I would like it to look perfect and peaceful.... and maybe it is such an unattainable goal for me because that perfection has already been accomplished. It did not come wrapped in gold and silver, velvet or silk....just rags and immeasurable love.
May the Lord bless you abundantly this Christmas with eyes of faith to see the Christ who is the reason I celebrate.
Linking up to these parties!
Stone Gable, A Stroll Thru Life, Elizabeth & Co, The DIY Dreamer, A Bowl Full of Lemons, Ladybug Blessings, Cozy Little House, Just A Girl And Her Blog, Time Warp Wife, Kathe With An E, Savvy Southern Style, The Blissful Bee, The Newlywed Pilgrimage, Simply Designing, Gingersnap Crafts, Ivy and Elephants, DIY By Design, Handy Man Crafty Woman, Crafty Allie, Shabby Art Boutique, Too Much Time On My Hands, Lambert's Lately, The Charm of Home, Craftberry Bush, From My Front Porch To Yours, My Flagstaff Home, Joyful Homemaking, Jann Olson, Blesser House, Must Love Home, A Delightsome Life, Up To Date Interiors, A Vision To Remember, AKA Design, The Pin Junkie, Grace and Good Eats, French Country Cottage, Chic On A Shoestring, I Heart Naptime, Just Us Four, My Romantic Home, The Cottage Market, The DIY Village, DIY Vintage Chic, Blooming Homestead, A Tray Of Bliss, Little Miss Celebration, Pieced Pastimes, One More Time Events, Reasons To Skip The Housework, Finding Silver Pennies, Thoughts From Alice, Inside the Fox Den, DIY Showoff, Dwellings-The Heart of Your Home, Coastal Charm, Flamingo Toes, I Should Be Mopping The Floor, Cupcakes and Crinoline, Home Stories A to Z, Huckleberry Love, Sand & Sisal, Creatively Living, Plucky's Second Thought, Karen's Up On The Hill, Create With Joy, LouLou Girls, Strangers and Pilgrims on Earth