Sunday, December 30, 2012

Santa Claus Theology



This post was written a while back by my BFF, Edie........

well, not really my BFF, but I have MET her 
and I have read her blog for years and years.


Santa Claus Theology

I doubt there’s one of us left who escapes it.
It’s our natural theology.
“He’s gonna find out who’s naughty or nice” haunts us from the time we’re old enough to talk and we fear that our nice hasn’t been nice enough.
The sad truth is, it hasn’t.
By December 24th, I’ve committed enough sin in one year to fill a lifetime. And you probably have too.
Yet, we continue to operate in our relationship with God as if he’s like Santa Claus.
Maybe if we manage to keep a few basic rules of *niceness* in this life, we’ll get what’s on our list.
How many times have I told myself, “I’m a pretty good person”?
To borrow Pastor Cwirla’s description, we’ve allowed the transactional nature of our culture and of secular Christmas to seep into our spirits. And even if we deny it with our lips, we fear it’s true with all our being.
He’s keeping score. “He sees you when you’re sleeping. He knows when you’re awake.”
And we know it beyond a shadow of a doubt. The gnawing, besetting sins that keep us in bondage remind us that we are not measuring up.
But does He really keep track? When He looks at me, does He have my ‘naughty’ list in His hand, ready to read it back to me in all its gory detail?
The answer to that question is yes and no.
He keeps track. He knows every sin. Every single one.  The lies, the gossip, the unkind words, the evil thoughts, the hatred and jealousy.
He knows them all.
But He’s not keeping them in a sin file to use against me later when He’s ready to weigh the balance and see whether the ‘nice’ outweighs the naughty’. He already knows the answer to that question and I don’t fare very well.
Instead, like a loving Father, he sends His son into the world, as a little tiny baby—the Word made flesh—-to redeem it back to Himself.
He himself will right what has been wronged.
He himself will find what has been lost.
He himself will die so that we may live.

He doesn’t overlook my sin like a senile grandfather.  I can’t ‘make up for it’ in the month before Christmas by doing a lot of good deeds.
He knows every last sin and takes it on Himself and nails it to the cross. My punishment is paid in full. He has tipped the scale. And in the process, He’s made me into something much more than ‘nice’. He has washed me clean in the waters of baptism. He has made me whole with the food from heaven, his very own body and blood. He has deemed me holy with the righteousness of Christ. He loves me. He is my Father. And He has given me EVERYTHING I need in the gift of His son.
And He’s done it in such a way that I can’t possibly take any credit. I didn’t seek him or choose him or love him or deserve him. His grace gift is free and the repentance that is required to receive Him is a gift from Him as well.
Our God is no Santa Claus. He will not strike a deal with us. There is no bargaining. He is not waiting for us to do ‘our part’.
He is our Father and has revealed   His undeserved love and kindness toward  us in Jesus.  The work, the striving, the rule-keeping, the measuring up–he’s taken it all upon Himself.   Perhaps He wonders why we are still trying to keep score.     In Christ, we are reconciled to the Father and no amount of ‘niceness’ could ever have done that for us.   We receive His forgiveness and His love with thankful hearts and look with joy and wonder at the miracle of His incarnation.
What a grand relief!
Love has come.
And He has freed us from naughty and nice.
May His peace be your gift this Christmas.

2012 Christmas


Our second round with twins is just as exciting as the first....

Due April 25, 2013


The *big boy* twins got the cutest backpacks!!!



And the girls enjoyed all things princess and baby dolls!



B dressed like his daddy...you can get by with that when you are TWO!



We had our annual Christmas Eve Brunch with just the ladies.

 My sister started this tradition back in the 80's and when she passed away, 

her daughters (back row on left, front row center)
continued the tradition.

It was a good Christmas.

A sweet time spent with family.

Here's to blessings in 2013.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Five Question Friday








1. If you had to give 1 million dollars to just one person (not your spouse), who would it be and why?

One of my children, because I would hope they would dole it out to the people and places I request of them.


2. What bathroom stall do you typically go to FIRST? 


Never the first stall because I feel like it's the one most used.
 
3. How do you prefer to shop: In-store or online?


Online...I did ALL my Christmas shopping that way. Did not step foot in a mall!

4. What's the weather like in your neck of the woods?


I am in North Carolina. We are blessed to have all four seasons. We don't have a whole lot of EXTREME weather. Right now it is hovering around 30 degrees!

5. Do you own a pair of Tom's and what do you think? Overrated, underrated or about right?


I don't own Tom's but lots of kids in the family do. I think they are UGLY but I like the concept of donating a pair of shoes to those in need!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Sometimes



Sometimes the lights aren't bright

And the smiles don't come

And Christmas isn't too merry.

Sometimes people are sad

And hungry

And just plain have a hard time with the holiday season.

Sometimes we aren't sensitive enough 

And we forget.

Sometimes family members are missing

And the ones that are left don't get along.

Sometimes we forget to be thankful

And forget to thank.

Sometimes we don't get this whole thing right

Sometimes we do.

Lots of times we remember

But sometimes we forget.

Sometimes happens too often.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Christmas Card Carousel




Linking up with Faith here:




Merry Christmas!

This year's card is one of my favorites!

A good friend, Sarah, designed it.

My DIL, Jenny, took the pictures.

Enjoy!

 
 We are indeed counting our blessings

And thanking the one who has blessed us.

Happy Birthday Jesus.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

December


December is here.

Comes every year about this time.:)

Along with it comes all kinds of things.

My dad has a birthday on the 7th.

This year was a BIG one for him.

So thankful to have both my parents.


My DIL took our family picture for our Christmas card. I will link the card when it's time for the Christmas Card Carousel....but, here is a sample of the pics.

It's no small feat to get everyone together looking at the camera...and next year there will be two more. :) They know how much it means to me to get a picture every year, so they put up with me. Thank you kids!

My gifts are bought and wrapped. I hope to spend the next two weeks baking and blessing others. I want to pass on the joy of Christmas and share the love of Jesus.

Merry December! 

Friday, December 07, 2012

Happy Birthday Daddy!


Nobody has a better daddy than me.

Happy Birthday Daddy.

I sure do love you.



Waiting on the birth of one of the babies..........:)

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Favorite Things December



I'm back. 

December is here.

I'm busy.

So are you. 

One of the things I love about December:


My mom and dad's house at Christmas.
It smells good.
It feels good.
It's filled to the brim with children.....
TEN of them five and under.
It's chaos.
It's lots of food.
And gifts.
Jesus is there.
It's Christmas.

What is one thing YOU love at Christmas?




Sunday, November 25, 2012

November Where Are You????




November has been filled to the brim in our house! 

We celebrated 20 years of service with Renee'....one of our best employees!!!! (Who has also become a dear friend.) 
Renee' is amazing!
 She does her job effortlessly and does it well.
Renee' never complains....can you imagine working with someone like that?
She is always happy and her signature laugh is contagious!
Thank you Renee' for being who you are...
And for showing us what it means to trust God for all things.
You are the best!


Thanksgiving was a wonderful gift.
The food was so good and the blessings were even greater!


We sure did miss THIS little turkey who was with his other grandparents:

AND.... we were blessed to see the twins again....growing and perfect!
Thank you Jesus for blessing us!

Bring on December!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

It's Birthday Time Around Here!



We celebrate THREE birthdays in the next few days!

Our oldest son turns 35 today!

It is our joy and blessing to call him our son.

We learned how to be parents when he was born.

He amazed us with his abilities....still does.

Happy Birthday B.

Our hearts are different because of you....

And we love you.




HIS baby boy, our first grandson, turns TWO Monday!

Baby B is a bundle of energy.

A beautiful boy.

An answer to many many prayers....

One of the loves of our lives.

He loves Elmo and Thomas...his *guys* and wearing rain boots to bed.

Aren't we blessed to have him???!!!

(Told you he was beautiful.) :)






 And lastly, our second granddaughter turns THREE Sunday.

Finally.

She has seemed older than two for a long time.

A is a funny, funny girl with a mind of her own....

And don't you try to change it. :)

She is a precious, spunky girl who loves ballet, Minnie Mouse and her milk.

She has an amazing sense of humor and keeps us all laughing!

We are blessed to be her Nonny and Poppy.




 Happy Birthday to some of our favorites.

You each have changed our lives.

Love you three!



Monday, November 12, 2012

Goodness


Have you read this?


The pure GOODNESS from this girl is hard to comprehend.

Read this book. You will be inspired.


Goodness.


Last week I posted on Facebook that I needed clothes for a baby girl in our community. 
The response was overwhelming. 
The GOODNESS of people's hearts was revealed to me.
 Young moms responded with such hearts of giving. 
I was humbled and grateful.


Goodness.


And, just because this picture reminds me of the GOODNESS of God to bless us with this sweet boy..........


Goodness.


Have you been touched by GOODNESS lately?

Friday, November 09, 2012

What's On YOUR Bed Side Table??????




I have a dear dear friend who is one of the most thoughtful people I know.
 She painted a table for me to go beside my bed. 
She transported it from TN to NC.

All because she cares about me.

That in itself is a blessing.

BUT....

the table is BIG.

(Have always loved my mom's big, bedside table!)

I love the size of the table but I have no idea how to decorate it.

Sooooooooo

What is on YOUR bedside table????


Sunday, November 04, 2012

What A Week...Or Two


The virus got almost all of us around here. The twins birthday party was rescheduled because of it. Then, guess what? Nonny got it and had to miss their first party. I was so bummed. But I had a temp of 101 and didn't want to share that with anyone else. I can tell by the pictures everyone had a great time and everything looked great! How cute are these smash cakes???!!!




Happy Birthday Boys! I have loved celebrating your first year of life.



I have some adorable grandsons who turned into a Cowboy and Indian AND Elmo for Halloween. No tricks here...only TREATS! 












 We went to Disney with our daughter, son-in-law and grandgirls.
They were in Minnie/Princess Heaven all week.





 Back to reality this week.

I may or may not have put up my Christmas tree today.

Don't hate.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

The Secret Is Out!!!!!!!!!!!


Baby B is going to be a big brother in April!!!

And guess what else?







It's TWINS!!!!!!!

Can you believe it?


This is my oldest son and his wife.





The other set belongs to my youngest son.


And no, twins don't run in our family.


Until now...:)


Can you even believe it????



video
 

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Five.


Birth

1st Birthday


2nd Birthday



3rd Birthday


4th Birthday



Birthday #5


Five things we love about you:
  1. We love how you hold your *blue nigh night* when you sleep.
  2. We love how happy you are when you get to come home with us.
  3. We love how you LOVE to go to preschool.
  4. We love how you pretend to shop at Nordstrom with your babies.
  5. We love how curious you are.
You bring so much joy to our lives.

Thank you for teaching us how to be Nonny and Poppy....

 our job is easy, because you are easy to love.

We pray you always have a grateful heart and compassion for others.

We pray that you will learn to serve others

and fall deeply in love with Jesus. 

Remember what Nonny always tells you:

The first shall be last and the last shall be first.

We love you.
Nonny and Poppy

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Happy Birthday Twins!


I will never, ever forget the moment I saw this picture.


Today those baby boys turn one year old.


The Lord has so graciously allowed us to be their Nonny and Poppy.

They have brought us unspeakable joy!

Happy Birthday Boys.....

You are here, in this place, at this time for a reason.

We can't wait to watch you grow.

Love,
Nonny and Poppy