(at the bottom are pictures of our Christmas Eve and Day)
How are you celebrating the third? or second? day of Christmas?
You might ask, what is she talking about?
(for your convenience I've highlighted the words in red which just might be too much information - you can scroll passed them to just ordinary Elizabeth words)
Well, there's a liturgical calendar which fascinates and intrigues me. I regret that in our protestant casual expression of faith in Christ we've thrown out all ritual. I actually think that there is discipline and humility in some ritual when done with a true heart. It involves boundaries, laying down of one's will, and in obedience speaking truths which we might not speak aloud together in the rush of daily living.
Back to the liturgical calendar. I don't even know what liturgical means. Let me look it up. Hold on for a second.......
she's looking it up......
Here it is.
Pertaining to formal public worship or liturgies.
So, define Liturgy.
again, looking it up....
Here it is.
A form of public worship; ritual
A particular arrangement of services
Litany: a ceremonial form of prayer consisting of a series of invocations or supplications with responses that are the same for a number in succession
Eucharist: the sacrament of Holy Communion; the Lord's Supper; the consecrated elements of the Holy Communion, esp. the bread
We're supposed to have been celebrating Advent - which is the anticipation of the coming of Christ, not only celebrating the coming of Christ in human flesh, but also His second coming when "the wolf shall live with the lamb, Isaiah 11:6, and when God will have brought down the powerful from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly". Or I like to put it this way, the final redemption when all shall confess that Jesus Christ is Lord - and those who have trusted in Him on earth will experience their complete redemption. No more sin and sorrow - no more struggles with this flesh. But for those who have rejected Christ - sadly they will live in eternal rejection. I hate that thought.
Advent ended on Christmas Eve and the first day of the Christmas season began on Christmas Eve. The traditional Christmas season begins with Christmas Eve on the evening of December 24 and continues until the Feast of Epiphany and on the calendar which I looked up January 5 is the twelfth day of Christmas. Either the Sunday before that or the Sunday after is when the church celebrates Epiphany, I think.
The Baptism of the Lord (or the Baptism of Christ) is the feast day commemorating the baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River by John the Baptist. Originally the baptism of Christ was celebrated on Epiphany, which commemorates the coming of the Magi, the baptism of Christ, and the wedding at Cana. Over time in the West, however, the celebration of the baptism of the Lord came to be commemorated as a distinct feast from Epiphany.
Wow, it's starting to get tedious. Still, I find it sobering to think that as a body of believers we might look forward to still more opportunities to celebrate Him, our Redeemer - collectively -
I realize this is one of those posts noone has the energy or interest to read - but, if you're still with me -
I naturally, culturally, think this morning, "Whew - it's over - now back to normal life". That's my referring to all the colors of the season - or the shopping - or the cooking - the eating - back to trying to shed some pounds - I was having some success until we got into the final week before Christmas Day. I can't even fathom the amount of calories I consumed yesterday - Heavy Cream in two of my recipes!
(the next part I did in large type to grab your attention before you x out of this blog post. )
I want to stop and absorb - that for the real reason we celebrate Christmas - it is what was born in my heart in 1968 - the Holy Spirit of God breathed life into me - into my soul and spirit. and He is faithful to grow what He began in me - shaping me and molding me and conforming me to His image.
All made possible because He planned eternally to redeem mankind and to leave His place in glory to be robed in human flesh and satisfy the righteousness of God - a gift to me - to you who trust Him - He conquered death and has given us His righteousness - and God loves us -
Can we personally celebrate that for 12 more days? and then another 353 days? and another 365 more days and so on and so forth until we meet Him face to face. I want to. I want Him to create in me the heart that loves Him passionately - it's what I've always wanted since I met Him. He is faithful.
God's Blessings to Me
and more on Christmas Day
I have to take more pictures.
Laura Beth was not in any of the pictures!
It was all quite a hullabaloo - and John was at her knee - so mostly shots of her knee were in the John photos.
I'm taking more pictures on this THIRD DAY of the Christmas season.
and will get some of Charlie and Laura Beth.
He wasn't in them either.