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Why The Queen’s Christmas Decorations Remain On Display Until February (via Hello!)

Our decorations were packed away yesterday, after the twelve days of Christmas had concluded.

I noticed a story about why the Queen Elizabeth’s Christmas decorations remain on display until February 6. Looking around it seems various media sources have been reporting the story; the earliest I found was from Hello! back on December 26.

The reason is sentimental, sweet, and long-standing.

Read about it at Hello! (or google the subject and take your pick of sources)


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The 21st Of December 2019 #howtomakegravyday

The 21st of December.
Paul Kelly’s How To Make Gravy.
This year, here’s a TED talk in which Kelly speaks about the song, its background and creation.
He then provides a reading and a rendition.
I like that what Kelly thought was a novelty song resonates with people in ways he never anticipated.
It was not written to manipulate our emotions, but rather engages with our emotions because it seeks to make us yearn for connections and experiences that are deep in memory and relationships.
“That’s the great thing about Christmas it comes around every year, so you always get another shot.”


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The Space Between by Sandra McCracken featuring Josh Garrels

Sandra McCracken has released a new album titled Christmas.
Guess what the songs are about.
It features a mix of original and traditional songs.
This one is The Space Between and features backing by Josh Garrels.
It demonstrates her capacity for heartfelt lyrics.


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Our King In A Crib (via Scotty Smith)

Scotty Smith provides a Christmas Eve prayer, that is true on Christmas Day and every other day, as well.

He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was room in the inn available for them. Luke 2:1-7 (NIV)

Lord Jesus, whether or not you entered our world anywhere near our December 25th is irrelevant. What matters is that you actually came from eternity into time and space—not as a metaphor, myth, or legend, but as our incarnate Creator, perfect Savior, and glorious King.
Any other king would’ve come with great fanfare and a royal entourage, seeking to impress. But you came into our world in utter humility and profound weakness, seeking to save. Every other king was once a baby. You’re the only king who reversed the order and became a baby.
No room in the inn” wasn’t an insult to you. It was your choice, your way—the essence of the gospel. After 33 years of life, it is you who made room for the cross. We bow in awe.
Indeed, you didn’t consider your equality with God something to be selfishly hoarded. Rather, you made yourself “nothing.” You emptied yourself by becoming one of us—fully man, yet never ceasing to be God.
As the Second Adam, you fulfilled the law for us. As the Servant of the Lord, you died in our place. As the Grave Robber, you rose for our justification. As our Glorious Bridegroom, you’re coming back for us. Hallelujah… we cry, over and over and over.
On this Christmas Eve, we worship you for coming to us, Jesus, and giving yourself for us. Thank you for saving us from our sins and selves. Thank you for ruling the world with your truth and grace, this very moment. Thank you for committing to make all things new and wiping all tears away. So very Amen we pray, in your great and gracious name.

Source


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A Microscopic Saviour (via Aaron Wilson)

Aaron Wilson reflects on the idea that if the incarnation of God in the birth of Jesus is an amazing idea, then the implication that God was incarnate in a collection of cells some nine months earlier is mind-boggling.

Nine months before Christmas morning, Jesus went from ruling the world in heaven with His Father and the Holy Spirit, to enter into the smallest, most dependent, most microscopic form of human life.
The God who authored a universe that can’t be measured, humbled Himself into a form that can’t be seen.
It’s a staggering thought.
The God who authored a universe that can’t be measured, humbled Himself into a form that can’t be seen.Even more mind-boggling is the fact that there was a time when the incarnate spirit of Jesus was in an embryonic human form that hadn’t yet grown eyes, fingers, a brain, or even a spinal cord.
Even Christ’s holy blood cells that would later be shed to save humanity, first had to be formed by a yolk sac inside of Mary’s womb.
In the months leading up to Christmas, Jesus—who formed the world and invented human reproduction—was Himself being formed inside one of His creations through the very blueprints He had established for human development.

HE HOLDS ALL THINGS TOGETHER
As you’re pondering these truths, consider Colossians 1:16-17 as it speaks of Jesus:
“For everything was created by him, in heaven and on earth, the visible and the invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and by him all things hold together.”
Doesn’t this truth make the incarnation all the more amazing? For a moment in time, the entire universe was being held together in the form of a microscopic, two-celled human embryo named Jesus.

Read the whole post at Facts And Trends.


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Christmas Fails

This page at Facts and Trends features ten moments when Christmas related church activities did not go to plan.
Most feature children and animals.
These are meant to be salutary warnings, not ideas, folks.
Here’s one with a Christmas camel, who does not seem to come off worse for wear.


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It’s Beginning To Look A Bit Like Christmas

With life getting more crowded we have to get started on some Christmas observances as little early.
And it isn’t Christmas without some Hans.

And some antipasto and snacks.