Gifts are not just for Christmas.

Christmas and New Year Greetings

Christmas decor chez moi – nativity scenes, tree and lights

Gifts are not just for Christmas.

Some of my usual Christmas habits were neglected this year, though I’m not quite sure why. It is my wont to write and send dozens of Christmas cards to update far-away friends and family and then to text all my contacts a Christmas greeting and to post greetings up on Facebook and social media.

But, apart from a few cards abroad, I did none of that.

Of course, all of those that I would normally contact were in my heart and prayers as much as ever.

And you, those who share your hearts and thoughts with me in our blogging community, were also on my heart and in my prayers.

Even Christmas at home was less excessive and much more relaxed.

But for all that, I did have a really joyful Christmas – focusing on hospitality, family, giving time and love, and rejoicing.

I hope and pray that your Christmas was also full of the great JOY that the birth of Jesus means to those who know and love Him.

I do want to send you all the blessings of divine love, perfect peace and great joy, that the season of Christmas remind us of – though of course these gifts, just like the gift of Jesus, are not just for Christmas!

For you, for Christmas and for 2023, I want to bless you with a word from scripture, as a prayer of love over you all.

Ephesians 1:16-23

I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.

May we continue to stand strong in the gospel of peace and to stand for freedom and justice in this world. May we hear the voice of the Holy Spirit, reminding us of all that He has taught us, in Jesus’ name.

Dancing in the Rain

‘Life is not waiting for the storm to pass, it is about learning to dance in the rain’.

(Painting and card by Lesley Hollingworth)

A friend, Marilyn, gave me this card last week and it has really blessed me.

I often find myself praying for the storm to pass, but it is a limiting attitude and now I realise that I also want to learn to dance in the rain!

As I have meditated on this thought, I realise that it is not just storms that I wait for to pass, but in many ways I while away my life, waiting for work, tasks, challenges, busy-ness and all manner of events to pass – waiting eagerly for ‘ME-TIME’, which is much appreciated – but meanwhile missing the blessings and joy of the day.

I want to dance in the rain, but also live in the abundance of life in every moment of the day.

Let us learn to dance with each other in the rain, in each of our moments, and in the joy of love.