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The Heart & Home
of Christmas


The Heart & Home of Christmas

By Karla Dornacher – Filled with inspiring stories, poetry, Scripture, and how-to's, The Heart & Home of Christmas highlights enjoyable and feasible ways to bring the story of Christ back to the Christmas season, from a shower for Baby Jesus to placing a nativity scene in the most unlikely place to giving to those in need. Author and arist Karla Dornacher shows that no activity is too small to be full of meaning during the busy holiday season. The following is an excerpt from her book.

Welcome the season . . . in His Name

Let your own personal taste, creativity, and budget guide you as you dress up your doorway to bless the Lord and greet your guests.

Decorate a simple wreath to welcome your guests with the Names of Jesus written on bright colored ornaments.

Hang a banner that declares the true Reason for the season.

Keep a basket of inexpensive candies or gifts beside your door with a tag that says, “In remembrance of the greatest Gift ever given.” Give them to guests as they leave.

Splendor and majesty are before Him;
Strength and joy in His dwelling place.
1 Chronicles 16:27 niv

When Jesus was born, God decorated the skies with heavenly fireworks to introduce the Light of the world. He scheduled the angelic choir to announce the Lamb of God to the lowly shepherds, and He sent a star to lead the kings from the East to worship the King of all kings.

Considering God decorated the heavens—His own dwelling place—it seems no less fitting for us to dress up our homes with strings of lights, carols that worship His Name, and symbols and seasonal reminders to help us celebrate the birth of His Son.

Some say that the Christmas tree, the candles, and other such trimmings belong to the pagan past; I believe all things belong to God—and we have simply reclaimed them for His glory!

This year as you decorate your home, delight in the symbolism of the season and thank the Lord for the reminders they are . . . of Who He is and of why He came.

O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree, How lovely are your branches

“I am like a tree that is always green, giving My fruit to you all through the year.”
Hosea 14:8

After almost getting our car stuck in the mud and sloshing for hours in slimy sludge, we returned home empty-handed. I had my version of the perfect tree in mind, but four tree lots later, we gave up and I gave in. Our traditional trek to cut our own tree became but a fond memory.

I still cringe at the word “artificial,” but I’m getting used to it. I remind myself that it’s not the kind of tree one has—real or fake, stately or scraggly, noble or pine—but the symbolism that points the heart heavenward.

The evergreen tree was first used in celebration of a false god by people who did not know Jesus, the Creator of this symbol of everlasting life. As those who know Him and love Him, we have redeemed its value and given it a place of honor in our celebration of the only True God, who created all things for His glory.

As you set up your tree, remember that Jesus is like an evergreen . . . eternal and everlasting. With Him there is no beginning or end. And one day we will live in eternity with Him!

Heavenly Father, thank You that not only is Jesus like a tree, but that He died on a tree to save us from our sins, so that through faith in Him we could have eternal and everlasting life.

Excerpted from The Heart & Home of Christmas, by Karla Dornacher. Used by permission of J. Countryman, the inspirational gift book division of Thomas Nelson Inc. Visit Karla Dornacher's Web site.

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