Today's post is all about stealing. Did you know I'm a thief? ha! Just joking, but when I reread last year's post I realized I "stole" Pam's neighbor gift idea and this year I "stole" Mandi's neighbor gift idea. Why come up with your own when you've got crazy creative friends who've already done the hard work?
Here's a picture of Mandi's great idea...
Oh yes, my friends, I couldn't wait to make my own homemade amaretto after reading her post and saw how incredibly easy the recipe was. No pictures of mine as my camera drove off in the car with my husband as he exited the event. Darn!
So, switching gears a little and onto the transparent topic for today. I have to admit that this year's Blessings Brunch almost didn't happen. I was seriously considering blowing it off. My attitude had been a bit bah humbug and the spirit of the season just wasn't settling into my heart.
Then, literally one week before the scheduled date I was sitting in church and these words pierced my heart, "Are you letting satan steal your joy?" Why, yes, that's exactly what I was allowing to happen! As I thought about this on a deeper level I began to acknowledge that joy is synonymous with Christmas. The real meaning of Christmas is celebrating the joyful birth of Christ and the hope that goes hand in hand with his birth. Of course satan would be attempting to steal that from me! He wants us to get all bogged down with the worldly things that coincide with Christmas, like stress and materialism, things that take our focus off of Jesus.
Good thing I was paying attention in church that morning because I was about to deny myself of a very special time with my family. I also realized that I needed to simplify things in order to not throw myself into a tizzy. So, when someone asked what they could bring, I accepted their offer. And know what else?...I didn't bake a thing. Planning the food for events stresses me out so I came up with the great idea of a yogurt bar. I purchased several types of yogurt, granola and fruit, then called it a day. Everyone else pitched in and our brunch was a success!
It was the time that we cherished, not the food. It was the prayer time we shared that will burn itself into our memories. It was the joy of loving one another and celebrating Jesus that was the utmost importance. Guess what, Satan?...You tried to steal my joy but your sneaky ways don't even compare to the love of my Lord!
Now I ask you, are you letting satan steal your joy? I'd love to pray for you if you're struggling through this hectic time of year. Leave me a comment or send an email: firstname.lastname@example.org.