Years ago, when the kids were little, I wanted to make Christmas memorable as our family grew and changed. The grandparents had their own special traditions and I wanted the same.
Our boys at that time were four and two years old and I was pregnant with our third child. It was Christmas Eve and I was exhausted.
The four-year-old asked for pop. I knew that if he had it, then two-year-old brother would want it, too, and not eat his steak dinner. The evening quickly dissolved into a night of fussy eating, a few tears, and the magic of Christmas burning outside on the grill.
I wished McDonalds were open for Christmas Eve.
A sudden solution came to me. I spontaneously turned off all of lights so nobody could tell what was on their plates. It stunned the kids into quietness, and even wonder, I dared hope. I winked at my hubby and slipped my oldest some Sprite in a glass, pretending it was water to the younger one. [Be real here. Haven’t we all done this?] Because we couldn’t see anything at the dark table, I gave everyone their own personal candle. The flame seemed to pacify Mr. Two-Year-Old and the Christmas candlelight dinner tradition was born.
Somewhere along the years, we’ve added something really special. As our prayer, we now go around the table, each lighting our candle while sharing something for which we are especially thankful. [So you get no Hallmark movie vibes about us, know I often had to break up fights about who would get to say the dog's name with our four boys.]
While the tradition has stayed pretty much the same, some things are different. I surely thank the Lord that nobody cries anymore. And we have also upgraded to wine, fake and real, instead of Sprite. But this year I added something more. I had warned our family that they had better be prepared to share the WHY of their sentiment. Exactly what has the Lord done in their lives this year? How have they seen Father and His amazing love?
This special family tradition reminds me of an astonishing Christmas song—Lauren Daigle’s “Noel.” It’s number one on Praise Charts for a reason. This song creates an atmosphere of wonder, presence, and hope like no other. It may be a top favorite of mine. Move over “O Holy Night.”
Here’s the chorus for you. [Watch and listen HERE. You'll be glad you did.]
Come and see what God has done
The story of amazing love!
The light of the world, given for us.
Our God sent a baby into the world to reconcile unto Himself a creation who would ultimately betray Him. We could stop right there and that would be mind-boggling in and of itself. But our Lord is a God of Much More. He gives us amazing love and all of the blessings each and every day.
While you’re with loved ones today, I encourage you to spend some time recounting the wonder of both the Christmas story of salvation and what the Lord has personally done in your lives.
Here is our last confession of the Christmas season. I hope you have enjoyed preaching the truth of God's words to your very own soul.
Merry Christmas. Noel!
Oh, my soul, come and see what the Lord has done. Come and see what awesome miracles He performs for his people! Come and see the amazing things he has done in my own life.
He is love incarnate and love divine. Here even before the world even began, my eternal God became a frail, weak human being as His eyes beheld mine. My Jesus is the Son of God and the last Adam. He is the story of amazing love. He came to take away my sin. He was born to raise me from the grave into new life!
Unto [your name here] a child is born. He shall reign forevermore. Christ in [your name here], the hope of glory!
Noel! Happy Birthday to my Jesus! I see the Christ-child in the manger of my life. I see Jesus, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. I see the Word of God. I see the source of light. I see love. I see the Resurrection Life. I see hope, itself, wrapped up in swaddling clothes.
My Lord is my source of hope. He fills me completely with joy and peace in my belief and trust of Him. I overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.
The LORD has done great things for me. What joy!.
The LORD has done great things for me. I am glad!
Yes, the LORD has done amazing things for me!
(Based on Psalm 46:8, Psalm 66:5, Psalm 126:3, John 1:1, John 1:29, Isaiah 9:6, Luke 2:6-7, Luke 2:10-12, Hebrews 13:8, Colossians 1:27, 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, Romans 15:13, and Revelation 19:16)
*I pray you have been encouraged in Christ during our Advent Calendar Countdown. Thank you so much for reading and sharing these Confessions of Hope with others. I appreciate the comments, emails, snail-mail cards, the shares on social media, the real and virtual hugs, and the prayers that you bring to me. You are a gift from Father. Each one of you.
Be on the lookout for a special guest post on the morning of December 27th!