Day One Time for a family meeting! Find some time today (or in the next few days) to ask each family member to rate each Christmas activity you usually do. Rate each one between one and five (one, not so much – five, a favorite). Perhaps you’ll be surprised as you discover their favorites. As you center your planning around these activities – hitting a 4 or 5 for each person, you are sure to give them a Christmas they will love and remember! Be sure to add your favorite to the list, and proceed with gusto! Please feel free to share as a comment your favorite, sight, smell, taste or Christmas activity.
12 Days to a LESS Stressed Christmas
I hope you and yours enjoyed Thanksgiving (our favorite holiday). Family, friends, the attitude of gratitude and a thankful heart are what I enjoy the most about Thanksgiving – oh and the turkey! Please join me in a challenge to take these things (with the exception of the leftover turkey) into all of our Christmas planning. Starting December first I will be sharing a tip a day for twelve days with you, right here on Facebook. Everyone is welcome, so please invite your friends to join us as we pave the way for possibly your best Christmas ever! I am trusting Jesus, “The Prince of Peace” to keep us calm and joy filled every day. “Joy to the world the Lord has come” – let His peace and His joy come into your world this December and feel your holiday STRESS become less!
Our favorite holiday is going to be enjoyed very soon! It is a time when our family reflects on Gods goodness. There is nothing better than hearing from each one around our table, as they share what they are thankful for. Isn’t it amazing how quickly everything shifts – from being thankful for what we “have” – to making note of everything we “want” as Christmas lists are compiled and poured over? Could it be that we actually actually encourage this shift in focus as we seem to ask everyone we talk to, “What do you want for Christmas”?
The Lord has been encouraging me for several years to continue my attitude of gratitude throughout the entire Christmas season, even when that is not the norm. Keeping my focus on the real reason for this wonderful season brings such peace and joy that making a long list of what I want could never do!
There is no guarantee that you will even receive those “things” on your list, but there is something that we are guaranteed. When we keep Jesus Christ at the center of our thoughts we will enjoy His peace, His love and His joy! Beware this will be put to the test when you feel you ought to give up your coveted parking space to a weary shopper. I know this from personal experience! Now instead of trying to reason why I don’t have time to do that – I just (try very hard) to do it! When I do honor and prefer someone else above myself it is amazing that I get done what I have to do so much faster, and with a song in my heart! God created us to be kind – just like He is. So enjoy His incredible kindness this Thanksgiving and right through the Christmas season, as it leaks all over everything you say and do!
Finally, a fresh approach to creating the home environment that suits you best. We’ve all read the books on creating the perfect home, from concentrating on colors, styles, furniture trends and more…..But don’t we all just want to have a peaceful home that reflects our core values, our attitudes toward life and what we hold dear? Sue Wilson addresses these issues and more in her delightful new book, Home Matters!
photos by Sue Wilson
Lunch at a delightful tea house in Gatlinburg, Tennessee had many surprises in store for me, my daughter Anj and daughter in-law Cara, and this little guy was one of them. Our waitress had to point him out to us as he hung anchored to the umbrella at our table! Unfortunately we would not enjoy viewing his complete transformation, but we knew what would happen.
Perhaps the reason God created the metamorphosis that these creatures go through is to help us understand the transformation we can expect as believers in Jesus Christ. From the first stage as a caterpillar and then eventually into a beautiful butterfly is quite remarkable. If you are like me – you don’t always feel like a butterfly – maybe more like the worm. Take heart – just as we looked at that cocoon we knew that a beautiful butterfly would eventually emerge, God sees the beauty and the transformation that is taking place in your life and mine. This insect gains strength through his struggle and transformation is talking place. He leaves his cocoon behind and is ready to fly! Much like we leave our old life behind to embrace the new; are you ready to fly?
Anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun 2 Corinthians 5:17
I can still hear my mother say, “Susan – please sit still”- being still has never been natural for me, but I do see the benefit!
For me to “be still” has to do with slowing my mind/thoughts down from whirling at breakneck speed! When I breathe deeply (literally) inhaling Gods peace and exhaling all that is whirling around in my thoughts and emotions I begin to feel myself becoming still. My spirit fills with Gods peace. As I gain a better perspective of what is really going on – it is usually not bad as I thought! And during those times when it really is bad, forcing myself to be still reminds me that God is above everything else!
NASB – translates the verse this way: “Cease from striving and know that I am God.”
The Message – “Step out of the traffic! Take a long, loving look at me, your High God, above politics, above everything.”
I would like to challenge you to share what you have to do to become still? There is no right or wrong answer and most comments will be unique to the individual – but I am sure we all will share common ground, that this is not an easy thing to do!
I didn’t know! Going to a conference, and offering my newly released book for purchase – that was the plan. I am very thankful for the wonderful women that I met. And for everyone that I was able to encourage with my book – if you are one of them – I am praying for you!
But true to His nature, God had so much more planned for my week end…The speaker Harriet Mouer encouraged us to:
allow our Father God to embrace us as Abba Father- our heavenly daddy, establish rhythms in our lives that are healthy – such as consistent – periods of rest after work, and to dream big!
As my car made an exit from the beautiful mountains of Tennessee, my heart was full of excitement, peace and a whole lot of joy. My traveling companions and book selling helpers – Anj and Cara joined me in meaningful conversation all the way home as we pondered these unexpected treasures God had given to each of us. I am in great anticipation as I “walk out” the “next step” in each of these areas of challenge…
Reduce your clutter, Relieve your stress and love your home
Because Home Matters!
You can now order on Amazon!