Monday, December 8, 2008
Remembering Christ this Christmas
With Christmas approaching, I try to direct my reading toward what would cause reflection of Christ. During this season i want to keep Christ in his place. My thoughts often are and should not be on what i am buying whom and if there is snow and my eagerness to be back in Colorado.
Haha, the truth that God so clearly spoke to me over the Thanksgiving holiday is already easily forgotten 10 days later. Christmas is about him. It is about remembering and praising HIM.
Anything i can read/do/sing that will help me to keep this focus during the many distractions and commercial world that i live and work in, is something that i need. Maybe you are challenged in the same way. Here are some thing i've thought of that may encourage us both.
I've been reading Francine River's "Lineage of Grace" series. Francine Rivers is one of my favorite novelists of all time. There are 5 books in this series. Each book focuses on one of the 5 women in the lineage of Christ: Tamar, Bathsheba, Rahab, Ruth, and Mary. Of course, this is historical and biblical fiction, but fiction nontheless. Though in the back of each book, Rivers includes the scriptures that she used to weave her story and she challenges her readers to find the truth for themselves. Each of the novelas are very short - i've been able to complete one on a plane ride or within my lunch hour during a week of work.
One of the most meaningful guided Bible studies i've ever done is "Jesus the one and only" by Beth Moore. If any of you know anything about Beth Moore, you probably agree that she is an anointed teacher of scripture. I've done a few of her studies - they are so amazing. This one i've done a few times. The first time with a dear friend and accountability partner as we were anticipating Easter in 2004. The second time during our year in Kenya. This is a 10 week study with accompanying videos (which i never do because i can't afford - but maybe a local church's womens ministry would let you borrow them). The first 2 weeks are entitled "The Word Made Flesh" and "The Son of God". it would be worth it just to go through these 2 chapters in the next two weeks if you so desire.
I just really need some inspiration and something to encourage self-discipline (i certainly struggle with that) in keeping my heart and mind on Christ amidst all the other wonderful joys of Christmas. What do you do to "keep Christ in Christmas" in your hearts?