December 31, 2005
Bonnie put it really well at her blog. It was a great night. I was so happy to see people actually taking the tracts, and thanking us for them! I also ran back to the house for more tracks so I missed Vincent’s first open air. I came in for the last few words. Way to go Vincent! Like Bonnie said, a few people just didn’t ‘appreciate’ what we were doing. But, hey, there isn’t a whole lot they can do about us. : )
HAPPY NEW YEAR Y'ALL!
A view of the first night fireworks.
December 30, 2005
December 29, 2005
I'm positively giddy. The rain is melting all the snow!! And it's warm! (Sorry...I keep harping on the weather....I should find something else to blog about.....)
We talked about time this morning in devotions and how much time we waste, and what constructive things we should fill with our time so as not to waste it. So, in an effort to find our where all MY time is going I wrote down, everything I did, from right after devotions till supper. I was amazed at how much faster I went from one job to the next when I knew I was going to be able to look back on my chart and say, 'I just spent an hour deciding which job to do next, that was dumb.' Then I got to thinking. God know exactly how I spend my time. Not just today either when I was consciously working at spending it wisely, but yesterday, last week, last month, last year, and all the years of my life. It's all been recorded. Now the Bible speaks about giving an account for every idle word. (Matt. 12:36) How about time spent being idle?
December 27, 2005
As I’m sitting here typing, mom is watching ‘Everest’ (as seen in the IMAX theaters). The rest of us watched it earlier. Wow! How absolutely positively incredible!! Excellent footage of the highest place on earth. Here are a few random facts surrounding Everest.
*Everest is 29,035 feet tall.
*The first man to successful reach the summit of this great, huge, massive body of rock, ice, and snow was one Ed Hillary (from Britain) and Sherpa Tenzing Norgay, in 1953.
*Everest is 5 ½ miles above sea level.
*150 people have died on ascending and descending the mountain (most are still on the mountain).
One thing I noticed while watching the video was sky. It was very dark blue, almost black in some spots because they are so high up.
December 24, 2005
Here we come a Caroling....
Bonnie asked me last night while we were out serenading the town:
"What is it like to have a name that can be used as a verb? I mean no one goes, Bonnie-ing!"
Such a heavy burden, I know, but I deal with it.
The temps here have been SO warm, in the 40-50's!!! Wow, lets go swimming or something quick before the lake freezes over again.... oh wait, there is still a little ice, maybe we could chop a hole and jump in.
I read an article last night which was dealing with where your passion is. What consumes your day and your thoughts? Does your heart overflow with praise to the Lord willingly or are you giving just lip service? Does your life reflect what you say? Are actions backing up your words? The games, the TV, and trivial pursuits, the 'fluff' activities we do, what eternal value do they have? Will we be ashamed when we see the Lord face to face?
It is interesting to think about and a good opportunity to examine your motives and thought life.
It also spoke about the doctrine (or lack of!) in Praise and Worship songs. He compared "I Love you Lord" chorus with the song "Oh How I Love Him" (to the tune, O Solo Mio). Quite a contrast.
Speaking of hymns, the words to this one have spoken to me many a times...
When I survey the wondrous cross on which the Prince of Glory died,
My richest gain I count but lose and pour contempt on all my pride.
Forbid it Lord that I should boast, save in the death of Christ my God,
All the vain things that charm me most I sacrifice them to His blood.
Well, I suppose I should go eat supper...concert tonight!
Have a great weekend!
December 21, 2005
Lots of things to blog about today.....
*Today winter is offically here! We've gotten a lot of winter weather this fall. I wonder what winter will bring? The other day it felt alomst like spring when it got over the freezing mark.
*I've memorized the first 42 verses of the first chapter of John. (I wish I would have done some serious memorizing before, the older you get the harder it is!)
*My fiddle has a loose sound post, due to a change in humidity (it's so DRY here) and it's making the A flat (on the D string) bubble and crack. It's so weird. No other note has been affected. Touché things these violins, very high strung...
*Check out Janlynn.com. This place has some nice free cross stitch downloads, lots of cross stitch links, a cool looking catalog, and more. They were very gracious and replaced the color chart of the project I'm currently working on which I accidentally left in a pocket and put through the wash and found in a bunch of small, unintelligible pieces.
*Bonnie got this interesting book about the the great Mt. Everest at a second hand store. The little pull outs were neat, although, I could have done without the Buddhist prayer flag. The view from the mountain looks spectacular! Wow. Did you know there is a 'yellow band' around Everest, made up of limestone and shale, and in that band there are billions of fossilized sea creatures? Good evidence of a worldwide flood, don't you think? The form you have to fill out so they know how to dispose of your body (!), and the stories of people who didn't make it back down, were all quite, eh, interesting. I don't think I want to try climbing Everest anytime soon! Particularly at $70,000 a whack.
*Our friends, the Dortignacs, made it back to CA. (Welcome home!)
December 19, 2005
Wow! What a weekend. Some of the concerts were so so (like the one that said at first they weren't expecting us and the one where someone chewed us out out for not smiling!?), but the last concert Sunday night made up for all that! A lovely weekend all and all. We got to sing at our old church for a big enthusiastic crowd. People who have seen us grow up were there to see us. Our very first concert was at this church 11-12 year ago. We did a 5 or 6 song scripture song set Sunday morning. Of course we didn't start singing every weekend but, something had happened. We were a singing family. The name "The MacDonald Family Singers' was copied from the Von Trapp Family. : P Some of the people in this group Sunday night have seen us grow from, just vocals, to vocals and instruments, to more instruments and more vocals, to vocals, instruments, a big ole' bus and a few tours under our belts. What's next? I don't know....maybe we should incorporate the unicycles? ; )
A friend of Bonnie's (check out his web site: www.slaveofchrist.com) has asked/told her to memorize the book of John. Three of us are going to do it. I've gotten through the first 18 verses. WOW. This is going to take some work, but it's going to be good!
Till next time....God bless y'all! (I'm feeling southern tonight.)
December 16, 2005
I'm sitting here in my wet boots typing this. I walked home through a bunch of puddles and slushy wet snow, but it was dark so I couldn't really see them, except when the car lights shone on them. =)
Here's some 'poison' I made today.....
...if you have a craving for Walnut Ginger Snap cookies, try this recipe. Betty Crocker and I worked this out.
3/4 c. shortening (butter for softer cookies)
1 c. brown sugar (packed)
1/4 c. molasses
2 1/4 c. flour
2 t. soda
1 t. cinnamon
1 t. ginger
1/2 t. cloves
1/4 t. salt (very important!)
1 c. chopped walnuts
Mix your wet ingredients and brown sugar. Thoroughly mix in the remaining ingredients. You may cover the dough and chill for an hour or you can skip that and make your cookies ASAP.
Heat oven to 350, drop cookies from a teaspoon. Dip the tops in poison, er, white granulated sugar and place them on a lightly greased baking sheet. Bake 10-12 minutes or just until set. Immediately remove from baking sheet. Yields about 4 dozen cookies.
December 13, 2005
This verse was illustrated so vividly to me when my dad was talking about selling the bus. Dad's dream, which he had given to us, of traveling on a bus and singing was fading as he talked about the pressure, the responsibility, his health issues, etc. But even so how could dad even talk about selling the bus? Wasn't this our dream, our vision, our lively hood? I remember quoting this verse to mom. Our hope was deferred and it was making us sick! After much prayer and fasting the Lord helped us get through all that and bus stayed and the music ministry is still intact. I was elated! Going though all that I don't take riding the bus for granted anymore. This bus is a precious gift the Lord has entrusted to us for the time being. As I look back I think of that time as the Lord testing us to prepare us for a more full time ministry. He was seeing if we would (I would!) lean on Him in all situations, even if it looked like everything was going to fall apart and our hearts were sick. Looking at all the churches, nursing homes we've been able to minister in, all the people we've been able to pray for, and the CD project which has gone places we've never been, it's all been worth it. It has been a tree of life. It's produced fruit and we're so thankful to the Lord for His leading and provision!
I also realized, with the help of a friend that selling the bus would by no means take away my ministry opportunities. There would just be different opportunities without a bus!
So, go out and do whatever God has called YOU to do, I know He will supply all your needs to do the job!
(That wasn't going to be so long, but it just turned out that way....)
I was going to blog last night, but I was SO tired. All this TV stuff can really wear you out. : P For those who don't keep up with Bonnie's blog we were the featured guests on a local tv show yesterday. (I missed you Bonnie, welcome back!!)
We had smooth sailing setting up even though the sound man showed up 20 minutes before we were scheduled to start. Our producer informed us when we got there we might have to tape this show and play it at a later date. Turns out dad had all the good ideas and equipment we needed and we were able to be aired LIVE! In the few minutes before we were set to start we'd get reminders from a loud speaker. 'Five minutes', 'two minutes', '30 seconds and you're on'! It was neat. Apparently this show is use to punk rock groups and jazz ensembles. I'm sure we were quite a shock! Though we were encouraged to hear that some people complain about the artists they have on the show. : P So, who knows. The boys smiled more than I have ever seen at a concert due to some dancing camera operators, it was so funny! Here's are some pre show pictures.
Another classic Nathan and pretty Bonnie!
December 10, 2005
HAPPY 1st BIRTHDAY!
“He who heeds discipline shows the way to life, but whoever ignores instruction leads other astray.
Today is my blog’s birthday! One year ago today acted on my hunch that having an outlet to write would encourage me to write more and so improve my skill. It certainly has given me an outlet, if I’m any better at it I’m not sure! Thanks to Bonnie for blazing the path. = ) So in honor this one year anniversary (wait, I thought it was a birthday?) I’m going to start a new blogging feature or whatever you want to call it. At the beginning of each blog I’m going to put a verse from the book of Proverbs from the corresponding chapter for that day. (For those who don’t know Proverbs has 31 chapters and we read one everyday together as a family.) I don’t know that this will be a permanent feature since I don’t blog everyday; we’ll see.
I think winter decided to come early this year. Twelve inches of the fluffy white stuff is everywhere. I was reminded this morning there is nothing like snow shoveling to get warmed up! Here are some pics from yesterday.
The beginning of the storm….
My brother is rubbing snow into his head here.
I know, I don’t understand either.
He seems to like it.
On the way to a concert.
If anyone is wondering why we’re in the van read on. In the bus snow + hills = disaster! And we like to advert disaster (and tow trucks!).
December 08, 2005
Well, so y'all don't wonder what happened to my prolific writer of a sister, she's on a hiatus until she can find her capo. Dad's orders. (For those who don't know a capo clamps on the guitar neck to enable a new key to be played with out changing finger of chords.)
Oh, yeah, I remember now what I wanted to blog about....
I am so extremely thankful for salvation I have through Jesus Christ and for the caring parents I have who introduced me to Him. My life would be so different without the Lord. This fact is so emphasized when I see the affect of sin in the people around me; the discord, unrest, fighting, the waiting for the next 'fix', the next high. It's so incredibly sad. Having no direction, no purpose they engaged in activities geared to satisfy their lustful desires. I can't even imagine myself in the place of the girl who had a son before she was 18 by her second cousin. It breaks my heart. That situation certainly makes me stop and think how blessed I have been. My parents have given me such a gift. To give me the greenhouse raising, the sheltered life and a spiritual foundation. The choice to follow the Lord was ultimately mine, but to have the gospel presented to me at an early age and in an conducive environment was so imperative. I'm so thankful that this is a thank you, mom and dad post instead of 'I'm going to kill you' and being forcefully removed from my home by the police. I'm getting a better picture of what I have missed the past few weeks, God has been so good to me. My heart goes out to these people who need someone to bring them the light. I know that darkness doesn't like the light because it exposed their wicked deeds but, it's still my job to be light and salt in this dying world, to take the message I've been entrusted with to them. I pray I will have the words to say to them, the words of life. Coming from a sheltered life I can't understand their problems in whole, but I do understand sin is sin and we're all guilty and deserve death. But, because of the shed blood of Jesus we can have eternal life through repentance. Hallelujah!
December 06, 2005
An acquaintance of mine was nice enough to point out I had a gross amount of typos and grammatical errors in the posting I linked to (the post you're looking at now). I apologize to everyone!! Please know, Dr. MacDonald can write and write well. His poor granddaughter did not inherit her paternal grandmother’s typing skills and it shows. : P That said, I believe these errors seriously detracted from his writing and for that I‘m sorry. I have corrected the problems that I found but, I will not boast they are all 'found and fixed' so, please alert me to any typographical errors at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you.
As I mentioned previously, here is the article written by Dr. William G. MacDonald dealing with the issues that surround Christmas. (Italics and bold original.)
Fallacy 1: That sacred duty demands an annual month-long anticipation of a week-long festival of Christmas, the driving mechanism of which is partying and exchanging presents.
Christmas as a season came in Christianity by the Constantinian accommodation of the Christian faith to pagan culture, some three and one-half centuries after Jesus was born. In the ancient Roman empire the most important, that is, most celebrated festival of the year was feast to the Roman god, Saturnus, god of seed-sowing, for whom a planet was named and also the seventh day of the week. This season of festivity for countering the onset of winter was accounted as an agricultural festival dedicated to Saturnus and called the Saternalia. It began on December 17 and lasted seven days through December 24. Presents were frequently exchanged. Business, school, and court were not conducted during the festival, and slaves were given increased freedom for the week. People reveled in feasting, drinking, dancing, gambling, and sensuality.
The day following the Saturnalia was December 25, still another feast day that had special appeal in the eastern part of the empire where the political power shifted in the fourth century. December 25 was the birthday of the Iranian savior-hero god of light, Mithras, the sun-god, celebrated as the greatest power affecting the earth and its inhabitants.
“The reason for the season,” as Christians of the early centuries knew so well was pagan; and it is pathetic for Christians today to think that because of the name change it later underwent in the fourth century, this season featuring high-spirited partying during the winter solstice, originally belonging to them. Christians of the first three centuries kept a low profile during the Saturnalia and on Mithras’ birthday. Since they did not even know, and therefore, did not celebrate the day of Jesus’ birth, they would be astounded to hear modern western Christians lament about the need to ‘put Christ back into Christmas,” as if pagan had taken over “Christmas,” instead of the other way around.
Fallacy 2: That the annual seasonal exchanging of presents among those who have the means to do so has anything to do with honoring Christ or implementing his teachings.
The most prominent, stressful, and costly feature of Christmas, exchanging gifts of equal value among social equals, while not giving the gifts to the living Jesus on his supposed birthday, demonstrates how far Jesus is out of the picture today in the holiday that bears his name --but little else of his. No one else is so treated at a birthday party when gifts are brought. Jesus therefore becomes the embarrassment of most Christmas parties.
Jesus discoursed on the broad aspects of giving-lending and the inadequacy of sinners’ motivation. The world gives only to those who benefit the giver or who can repay one’s gift or load in due course. His basic words from the sermon on the plain speak ever so perceptively to the subject of gift-giving motivated by selfish principles that do not meet the standard of his new kingdom:
And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ do that, And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ lend to ‘sinners’, expecting to be repaid in full.
When we apply this accounting of the Lord to Christmas day --as well we should--we get the following consistent query and comment:
If you give Christmas presents to those you anticipate will be giving Christmas presents to you, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ exchange presents among themselves.
Fallacy 3: That the coming of Santa Claus from the sky as a supernatural visitor to homes to provide gifts according to the wealth-level of that home, make him indispensable to Christmas, bringing abundance down from on high, the top of the world, alias North Pole, and making him the world’s celebrated and legendary giver, as weighed against a helpless holy baby, the gift of God, who has nothing to give-but himself in due course as the ransom for all.
The apostle John warned, “even now many antichrists have come” (1 John 2:18c). Santa Clause has all the following plusses to make him as anti-Christ in good standing (second in splendor only to the pope, who is more tangible):
1. He is believed to be omniscient, knowing all the good or bad children do at all times.
2. He has no great concern, however, for righteousness; so he gives presents even to bad people who have the money to play his game.
3. He is construed at be morally superior to Christmas-keepers in that they only exchange gifts Saturnalia-style, yet he gives Christmas presents to individuals as if it were their birthday and receives none in return (except from Ms. Claus).
4. He has no spiritual gifts to give, but provides the world’s more appreciated material presents, whose market value can be determined fairly easily.
5. He has a retinue of elves (like quasi-angels) and eight regular reindeer (as quasi-apostles whom he commands and who accompany him all over the world). He gets around faithfully, and there has never been a year in wealthy countries not in depression when his next coming did not materialize or the wait for him lasted more than twelve months.
6. He in recent years had acquired a surrogate for the Christ-child, Rudolph the red-nosed [ninth] reindeer, who though very young was chosen to guide Santa’s sleigh on the big night. In Santa’s version of the Christmas story, there is no baby as the center of attention, but there is his lovable little reindeer with whom, instead, all the children can identify, one chosen because of his red-glowing nose [substitute halo] to lead the team of reindeer.
7. He is virtually omnipresent, being simultaneously on the scene in his red suit in stores all over the city and throughout the nation, not to speak of there being millions of icons of him in all the print and television media and plastic or plaster statues of him that fill the land two months of the year, People regard the ubiquitous “graven images” of Santa with the same unguarded familiarity of acceptance that ancient Israel had for their statues of Baal that were everywhere during the many years of their unfaithfulness to their unseen God. Appearances that Santa Claus puts in from year to year even at church parties prove his wide ranging status as a substitute ‘instead of’ [Gk., anti] Christ.
Fallacies from Misunderstanding the Bible
Fallacy 4: That the two biblical accounts of the birth of Jesus authorize both the term, “Christmas,” and the day -December25- as his birthday.
Neither the date (day, month, year) nor the term (‘Christ[‘s] mass[s]’) occurs in the biblical texts that narrate the birth of Jesus. Both displacing Mithras’ birthday on 25 December and the supposed sacerdotal sacrificing of Jesus again in the Roman church’s high mass at midnight to begin the day December 25) are late developing traditions, of which the early Christians for centuries knew nothing. The first recorded festival of Christmas came in Rome in AD 336, and became finally fixed by the state-church in AD 354 to overlap the sun god’s birthday.
Constantine the Great was, by virtue of his office as Roman emperor, the pontifex maximus. He moved the government from Rome to Byzantium, which he called Constantinople, his capital. As the highest priest in paganism (pontifix maximus), he did not submit to Christian baptism until shortly before he died in AD 337, but he did not let this postponement of the rite initiation keep him from exercising great power over the church, which he legalized, led (calling the first general council to meet at Nicea in AD 325), and influenced greatly toward syncretism with the world. Prior to his “conversion” in AD 313, he had been a worshiper of Mithras, and therefore of the sun. Coins were struck and monuments were erected by Constantine that combined Christian doctrines with sun-worship. He bean the trend that ultimately would replace Mithras with Jesus as the symbol for the holiday, keeping the form, but changing the name and adding a continual sacrifice, the mass.
“Christmas,” as the term indicates, requires the mass. But the holy Scripture declares that Jesus was sacrificed once for all time (Heb 7:27; 9:12,26,28; 10:10,14; 1 Pet 3:18), making the sacrifice of the mass biblical impossibility, a heresy that cuts across apostolic teaching, and a contradiction of the Lord’s finished work at the cross (John 19:30), reducing it to the level of the OT animal sacrifices that had to be made continually. Rome’s treachery in this matter of shifting salvation from the finished work of Christ to the unfinished work of the Roman church, needed to keep the OT-type priesthood busy, is explained concisely in:
Dave Hunt, “’Sacrifice’ of the Mass,” A Woman Rides the Beast. Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1994, 369-387. [This book of biblical exposition, replete with history and prophetic critique, is definitive -- a classic of the twentieth century.]
Luke can be specific in recording placement in history, e.g., Luke 3:1-2. Because he did not record the date of Jesus’ birth, while giving other details about his birth (Luke 1:26-56; 2:1-39), we must conclude that the date of his birth in about 4B.C. (after adjustments are made from the old to the modern calendar) had no importance for doctrine, any more than do the unrecorded facts about his physical appearance, or the name of his sisters. For those who would speculate anyway, a date in late December is much too far into the cold season for the shepherds to have been out in the open all night (Luke 2:8). The day and month of Jesus’ birthday were not a matter of revelation, and therefore the exact date has no relevance for our understanding of the gospel.
Fallacy 5: That God incarnated himself by degrees (as a pair of gnostic aeons), by first becoming an angel (in the OT), and then that superangel’s becoming a man (in the NT).
Hebrews, chapter one, completely disallows any mixing of angelology into Christology. Popular support for the incarnation as occurring first in “the angel of the Lord” is bolstered by a coordinate misunderstanding of a phrase from the famous Christmas carol, O Come All Ye Faithful, with the line, “born the king of angels.” For a full examination of the mirage of Christoangelomorphology in all the supposed biblical texts and in the history of their interpretation, see:
William G. MacDonald, “Christology and the Angel of the Lord,” Current Issues in Biblical and Patristic Interpretation, ed. By Gerald F. Hawthorne. Eerdmans, 1975, pp 324-335.
Fallacy 6: That the shepherds and wise men arrived in Bethlehem at the manger on the same night, meeting and greeting each other, as well as the infant Jesus.
Matthew 2:10 indicates “house” as the place Jesus was when the wise men arrived. Contrast Luke’s saying “there was no room for them in the inn” (Luke 2:7) on the night of Jesus’ birth. Rooms of an inn were built on the second story around a patio. Underneath each room there would be the stable to tie, feed [hence the manger], and protect the travelers’ animals of transit.
Since Bethlehem was only five miles from Jerusalem, and a three days’ trip back to Nazareth, Joseph and Mary would have had an incentive to remain at Bethlehem until Mary could be purified [40 days] and Jesus, her firstborn, could be presented in Jerusalem in the temple (Luke 2:22-24).
Fallacy 7: That the evergreen Christmas tree, brought into English-speaking homes for just 200 of the past 2000 years, has validity because the cross was a “tree.”
“Tree” as a euphemism for a hewed upright with a crossbar for executing Roman criminals refers to Jesus’ cross in the NT (Acts 5:30, 10:39, 13:29, 1 Pet. 2:24). On his way to imminent crucifixion, Jesus spoke a riddle to the women who wailed for him along the road: “For if men do these things when the tree is green [the speedy miscarriage of justice that ordered the crucifixion of an innocent man], what will happen with it is dry?” [the destruction of Jerusalem in rebellion against Rome, to occur within the generation]. The Bible says nothing to justify a Christmas tree or its veneration. The OT more than 36 times mentions groves of idols where trees were venerated. Any connection of Jesus’ birth [or death] with a decorated balsam, douglas fir, or spruce tree is arbitrary, unwarranted, and derived from non-Christian historical roots.
Tree worship by ancient Semitic people also was practiced by medieval pagan Europeans, and in modern times the Teutonic/Germanic tree had migrated from Europe into the Christmas festival as its primary symbol. When compared with an animal’s feeding trough, the symbol of poverty making the birth of Jesus , a now artificial lighted “Christmas tree,” almost universally wins the competition to portray the focal center of the season in homes and churches. However ironic, it is not unusual for a fully trimmed 15’ tree to be gleaming near the pastor as he repeats his annual sermon on putting Christ back into Christmas. There is even a hymn to the Christmas tree sung in German [O Tannenbaum] and in English translation, but not sung in most churches--yet.
William G. MacDonald
December 04, 2005
December 02, 2005
My grandmother is a bird watcher so I did this with her in mind. I sent it off through the [annoying] post office and she got it a few days after her birthday. So, my suggestion to anyone who needs to finish their cross stitch project is get adopted by a big family who travels in a bus and work on it when you have long stretches of highway that needs to be filled with a constructive activity.
December 01, 2005
It seems it’s almost harder to get near computer now that we have DSL. The main computer, plus 3 laptops, a palm pilot type thingy and we still we still have to take turns!! Bonnie just looked at this and laughed. HA! Easy for her to say with a laptop staring her in the face. I’m considering getting a laptop, that way I can use the computer whenever I want. Although, that might be a bad thing. : P The four kids under me all have them and they do share them with me. I’m just an old lady without a laptop. *sigh*
Ok, on to different things…. two blogs I've read in the past few days were talking about Christmas roots (Lindsay) and Christmas trees (Justin).
When I was younger I didn’t see anything wrong with Christmas. My parents never ever lied to me about Santa and we never had a tree that I can remember, it was not materialistic really at all. (Although, was very very young because there is a picture of Bonnie under one when she was a baby, so we did do something, to what extend I don't know.) Christmas was just the time you got a warm fuzzy feeling, people were generous, good tidings, great food, Christmas Carols (with a name like that ya gotta love em') and a musical play at church (which I was in, I was a lip-syncing lamb, really fits me, eh?), and of course Jesus was the reason for the season and all that bit. My parents at some time decided we would not celebrate Christmas in the tradition Christian sense of the word. I didn't quite understand why my parents thought it wasn't the greatest. So, down went the tree, the gift exchange etc. Although, my grandmother while she was alive continued to give us gifts and make a big deal over the day by inviting us over for Christmas dinner. Apparently, the decision to not make a big deal out of Christmas did not come from reading a certain passage of scripture. My understanding of this subject is that scripture commands us to remember His death until he comes, not His birth. That combined with pagan roots doesn’t make it a very appealing. It would seem that the Bible is silent on the tree issue, except it does say not to have a graven image before you. Personal conviction has to come into play here. I view the tree as an unnecessary piece of junk to clutter up your living room and dump pine needles everywhere, which someone (guess who) will inevitably have to clean up! So in essence, it’s a waste of time. It's not forbidden, but why bother? The tree seems to be worldly phenomena, not based in scripture. The verse “Do not conform any longer to the patter of this world but be transformed by the renewing of you mind.” Romans 12:2 comes to my thinker right about now. So, my advice? Search it out, let the Holy Spirit be your guide.
My Grandfather wrote a 4 page paper titled ‘Christmas Fallacies’. I might be inclined to post it here, if I ever get it typed up. : p It touches on 7 different fallacies of Christmas. Including present exchange, date of Christ's birth, Santa, trees, etc. Biblically based and well written.
On a lighter note, we made CDs of our trip pics, 4 of them to be exact, filled with memories, places, and people we met. Here is Nathan on the way to the Dortignac’s house in Oklahoma…..simply shocking!
He had *just* washed his hair and it had not been combed yet. Thanks for letting me post this Nathan!