faith, holidays

Simple Holiday

We celebrated Christmas with just our little family of 4 1/2. I was happy to not be traveling this holiday season, but it was nice to have some video chats and phone calls with family on Christmas day.January1001

In the month leading up to Christmas, we used a Jesse Tree to celebrate the first advent of Christ when He stooped to become human like us. Each night (or at least most nights) we would have the boys open a little paper box with chocolates and a paper ornament inside. On one side the ornament pictured a symbol, and on the other side was a scripture passage to read.January1002

It’s a festive way to teach our little men about the ancestral line of Christ, prophecies pointing towards Christ, and the story of redemption. Isaiah 11:1 refers to Jesus as being a “rod out of the stem of Jesse,” which is where the Jesse Tree gets its name.

After reading the scripture or telling the Bible story, Stephen would have one of the boys hang the ornament on our branch, and then we would sing O Come, O Come Emmanuel. January1003We love the longing of that song because it reminds us how we should hope for Christ’s return. Now—just as Israel anticipated the Messiah’s first coming—we can anticipate His second advent.January1004

Christmas morning began with hanging our final ornament on the Jesse Tree—the Star of Bethlehem. January1005Then the boys opened their presents while Grammy, Grampy and the uncles watched over video chat. January1006January1007Silas and Cooper are now equipped with just-their-size camp chairs for our next adventure, an indoor play tent, a grill, new pots and pans, a kid-sized broom set, a Lego/train table, and so much fun stuff!January1008January1009January1011January1012

Mommy and Daddy gave the boys a bunk bed, so Daddy spent the evening putting it together. Since our dudes are still so small, I wanted something low to the ground. Cooper’s mattress is on the floor—which works well since he periodically rolls out of bed anyway. Silas’ bunk is only about 4 feet high, so all four of us are adjusting to having two boys in the same room. They didn’t fall asleep until 11pm Christmas night!January1013

It’s easy at Christmas to be distracted from the reminder of hope that Christ’s incarnation brings. A simple holiday helped to prod my heart towards the truth—however feeble my steps of faith might be—that Christmas isn’t about me. It’s about God and His grace that reaches down to me.

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