Saturday, December 24, 2011

Celebration of One Solitary Life

 And the angel said unto them,
Fear not: for, behold, 
I bring you good tidings of great joy, 
which shall be to all people.
For unto you is born this day 
in the city of David a Saviour,
which is Christ the Lord.
Luke 2:10-11


One Solitary Life ~ Author Unknown
Nearly two thousand years ago in an obscure village, a child was born of a peasant woman. He grew up in another village where He worked as a carpenter until he was thirty. Then for three years He became an itinerant preacher.
This Man never went to college or seminary. He never wrote a book. He never held a public office. He never had a family nor owned a home. He never put His foot inside a big city nor traveled even 200 miles from his birthplace. And though He never did any of the things that usually accompany greatness, throngs of people followed Him. He had no credentials but Himself.


 While he was still young, the tide of public opinion turned against Him. His followers ran away. He was turned over to his enemies and went through the mockery of a trial. He was sentenced to death on a cross between two thieves. While He was dying, His executioners gambled for the only piece of property He had on earth - the simple coat He had worn. His body was laid in a borrowed grave provided by a compassionate friend. 


But three days later this Man arose from the dead - living proof that He was, as He had claimed, the Savior whom God had sent, the Incarnate Son of God.
Nineteen centuries have come and gone and today the risen Lord Jesus Christ is the central figure of the human race. On our calendars His birth divides history in two eras. One day of every week is set aside in remembrance of Him. And our two most important holidays celebrate His birth and ressurrection. On church steeples around the world His cross has become the symbol of victory over sin and death. 


This one Man's life has furnished the theme for more songs, books, poems and paintings than any other person or event in history. Thousands of colleges, hospitals, orphanages and other institutions have been founded in honor of this One who gave His life for us. 


All the armies that ever marched, all the navies that ever sailed, all the governments that ever sat, all the kings that ever reigned have not changed the course of history as much as this One Solitary Life.
 
Merry Christmas my friends.  I trust you will all have a wonderful Christmas season.  Thanks for stopping by.


Thursday, December 22, 2011

Scripture Thursday Linky Party #8 ~ Guest Post

Verily I say unto you, 
Inasmuch as ye have done it 
unto one of the least of these my brethren, 
ye have done it unto me. 
Matthew 25:40

I am so excited to have a guest post today by my sweet friend Esther from Shoregirl's Creations.  Please check out her blog when you have time.  You'll definitely be inspired by all her projects, tutorials and recipes.   

When I think of the Proverbs 31 woman, I think of Esther.  Not only is she capable in so many different crafty venues, she's a pastor's wife, an excellent home-maker and home-schools her daughter.  She has a homeschooling blog
2 Love Learning as well with lots of good ideas for teaching children, even if you don't home-school.  When Esther and I met through our blogs we became fast friends.  

 
Compliments of The Feathered Nest
Here is Esther's guest post in her own words:

A Christmas Present for Jesus

Say the word "Christmas" and what pops into the mind of most children (and adults!)? 

Trees, Lights, Cookies, Caroling, Programs, and probably GIFTS!

There's nothing wrong with any of these things, especially when we use them to celebrate the greatest gift ever given -- Jesus!

Over the years I've heard people make the statement "It doesn't seem right that we give gifts to everyone but Jesus at Christmas time," and that got me to thinking -- "What would Jesus want for Christmas."

Almost as soon as I thought it this verse to came to mind:

"Verily I say unto you, 
Inasmuch as ye have done it 
unto one of the least of these my brethren, 
ye have done it unto me." 
(Matthew 25:40)

Compliments of Bumble Buttons
I try to live this verse out all year long......but at Christmas our family has started taking special note of those hurting around us. We've begun the tradition of finding one or two people each year to give to who might otherwise not have a very nice holiday or have a need of some kind....kind of like our "Christmas present to Jesus."

Sometimes it's:
  • a young family whose had a rough year because the husband had an unexpected stroke and has been unable to work all year
  • a man whose family left him and now he's alone and forgotten on Christmas
  • a Navy friend who needs a "family away from home" to spend the holiday with
  • a young person with not a lot of people to care about him in his life
  • an older person in the rest home with no family coming to visit and no gifts on Christmas day
  • or a family who is really struggling because of the downturn in our economy
Our gift may be money, sometimes it's items we know they need or would like, a Christmas meal and a shared afternoon, and on some occasions we've left our gifts under the tree and went to the nursing home to visit and bring gifts to a resident we've gotten to know.

Abby's Scripture Thursday Project
Bird graphic compliments of The Feathered Nest
Background paper by Raspberry Road Designs

Whatever the case - I think it's almost more of a blessing to us than to the recipient -- especially when it's done with the thought of giving to the One whose birth we celebrate.

A few "Christmas presents to Jesus" that I've been privileged to observe this year were:

1. A retired couple from church who offered to purchase and pack all the Christmas treats for our church this year -- anonymously!!

2. A sweet friend (and the author of this blog) who wrote up a prayer request list and sent it to her special friends. Included on the list where those in her community who would be hurting for one reason or another this Christmas! What a gift! The gift of love, concern, and prayer!

3. A young couple who volunteered to "do anything you want" for our Christmas program. No one knows (unless you've been there) how much this means to a Christmas program coordinator!

4. A neighbor (and friend) who invited my daughter and I to share in their Christmas family baking day ---- so fun and especially nice since we don't live near enough to family to be a part of one with "blood relatives."

5. A generous friend who shops for and packs beautifully all the gifts for our Christmas caroling each and every year. Often using her own money when not enough comes in from the church people. She's the world's best at entertaining in her home (it's not the dishes she uses, the candles she lights, or her beautiful home, but it's her servant's heart and ability to make one feel loved and special on each visit!) She uses her gifts to bless us and others year round -- one of those occasions is after Christmas caroling!

Compliments of the Feathered Nest
The list really could go on and on,but you get the idea: It doesn't take a lot of money to give most of these gifts! 

Any gift, given with love from the heart, is the perfect "Christmas present for Jesus."



Thank you Esther for your willingness to share today and for your giving heart.  This is a scripture linky party.  You may link up any project you've been working on that has scripture from the Bible.  Email me with any questions at Little Birdie Blessings




 

Sunday, December 18, 2011

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

Peaceful gentle snow started coming down yesterday like a soft blanket covering the ground.  Just what I needed to get the Christmas spirit in full swing.  What are things like at your house?  


If you were to stop by right now..........

you'd see:
bowls of homemade chex mix in process, decorations galore, stacks of Christmas cards almost ready to mail, packages to wrap, handmade ornaments in process. 

you'd smell:
cinnamon and cloves simmering on the stove, the fresh smell of Maine Fir coming from our wreaths and Christmas tree.  

you'd hear:
Christmas carols playing and the sound of chatty toddlers depending on the time of day. 


what I'm not telling you....
Okay okay, it sounds really good doesn't it.  Actually all that I said above is true.  Here's the rest of the story that I didn't mention..............

Lots of laundry
floors that need to be vaccumed
a tree that needs to be decorated
a house that needs to be cleaned
decorations still to be put out

I'm sharing this in case there's anyone out there like me who strives to have it together, but never seems to achieve that goal.  


Thankfully I have a husband who helps whenever I need him to.  He's good to me, will vacuum, do dishes and even wrap presents.  He's a keeper! 


The images included in this post are free as usual.  Please no selling of the actual images or including them in digital collage sheets for sale.  Enjoy this week, remember perfection is not possible.  Know when to slow down and smell the fir trees.  

Hugs to all my friends out there.  

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Scripture Thursday Linky Party #7

Compliments of Word Art Wednesday

When I reflect on Jesus' birth, this time of year I think of Mary, the mother of Jesus.  Can you just imagine being the woman who would carry the Savior of the world.  Most assuredly this was more than she comprehended or understood, but she TRUSTED God and that was all she needed.  I would imagine that she had a quiet and gentle spirit, that she was humble, and that she loved God with all her heart.

Compliments of The Graphics Fairy

And the angel came in unto her, and said,
Hail, thou that art highly favoured,
the Lord is with thee:
blessed art thou among women
.  
Luke 1:28

After the angel gave her the news, Mary responded.

Behold the handmaid of the Lord;
be it unto me according to thy word.
And the angel departed from her. 
Luke 1:38

Compliments of the Graphics Fairy


WOW, that's a lot of faith for a young woman.  Mary was most likely a young teenager based on the culture of that day.  Unwed pregnant women would be subject to stoning, and her family to public humiliation.

She only asked how this could be since she was a virgin.  She didn't argue with the angel, or fight it.  She was afraid but her Faith was stronger than her Fear.  


The above image is a digital page I made featuring Matthew 1:23.  The Scripture word art is made by Cassandra at Word Art Wednesday, and the vintage images are from The Graphics Fairy.

One of my readers just commented on the song, Mary Did You Know.   How could I forget that tender song.  Here's a link to watch a video clip of it.  Very moving.  MARY DID YOU KNOW?



Monday, December 12, 2011

Change For a Dollar

It is more blessed to give than to receive.
Acts 20:35b

I came across a very touching video this past week and would like to share it with you.  It's 10 minutes long, but am sure it will capture your attention until the end.  It makes me appreciate all that I have, and realize that I do have an overabundance of things.  I can personally say that it's much better to give than to receive. 


I was SO happy today to help out a bride-to-be with her wedding this coming weekend.  Knowing I have a supply of vintage textiles, she called to see if I had a certain item she'd been looking for.  I did indeed have what she needed and happily gave it to her to do with as she pleased.  


You see, for many years I sold antique linens and vintage postcards.  I no longer do that but have some things left from those days, things I couldn't part with.  I can't tell you the joy that I have today to give something away rather than sell it.  My heart feels warm.  That's why I give away free vintage images on this blog, it makes me happy. 


Possessions no longer have the hold on me that they used to.  If I have something that I know will make someone happy, I'll give it to them. 

My sister is coming thousands of miles this Christmas to be with our family.  I know I have trinkets and possessions that she admires, and I'll be surprising her with a few things this year. 


Do you have an abundance of things?  Craft supplies ~ collectibles ~ jewelry, etc.  Join me in starting a new trend of creative gift giving. 

The vintage images included in today's post are yours for free as usual.  Thanks for stopping by today.  God bless!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Lots of Christmas Freebies

I'm loading you up with some Christmas freebies this weekend.  I hope you enjoy them ~ my gift to you.


It came upon the midnight clear,
That glorious song of old,
From angels bending near the earth,
To touch their harps of gold;


Peace on the earth, good will to men,
From Heaven’s all gracious King.
The world in solemn stillness lay,
To hear the angels sing.


Still through the cloven skies they come
With peaceful wings unfurled,
And still their heavenly music floats
O’er all the weary world;
Above its sad and lowly plains,
They bend on hovering wing,
And ever over its Babel sounds
The blessed angels sing.


Peace on the earth, good will to men,
From Heaven’s all gracious King.
The world in solemn stillness lay,
To hear the angels sing.


Enjoy your weekend.  Thanks for stopping by.  Scripture Thursday is still open if you'd like to link up your project with scripture.  You can check it out here:  Scripture Thursday #6 Linky Party 

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Scripture Thursday Linky Party #6 ~ Joy to the World

And the angel said unto them, 
Fear not: for, behold, 
I bring you good tidings of great joy, 
which shall be to all people. 
For unto you is born this day
in the city of David a Saviour, 
which is Christ the Lord. 
Luke 2:10-11

Free Vintage Image - Cherubs

Joy to the world, the Lord is come!
Let earth receive her King;
Let every heart prepare Him room,
And Heaven and nature sing,
And Heaven and nature sing,
And Heaven, and Heaven, and nature sing.

Such a robust hymn of praise, written in 1719 by Isaac Watts.  A hymn that sounds better, the more voices that sing it.  I'm so excited that Christmas day is on a Sunday this year.  The first hymn of our church service will be "Joy to the World". 

Free Christmas Carol
Joy to the earth, the Savior reigns!
Let men their songs employ;
While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat, repeat, the sounding joy.
 
Mr. Watts didn’t intend for Joy to the World to be a Christmas carol.  He in fact wrote this song based on Psalm 98.  The lyrics were later adapted to what is believed to be music from Handel’s Messiah.   This hymn is one of the most sung Christmas carols today.  


My project above for today's Scripture Thursday is an 8x8 digital scrapbook page featuring Luke 2:10-11.  I used my own vintage graphics as well as some from Jessica Sprague and The Graphics Fairy.  
Your turn to link up a project with scripture.  Please link to your post, not your blog.  Your project must be scripture from the Bible, not an inspirational phrase or quote.  If you don't have a blog but would like to participate, email me a picture of your project at littlebirdieblessings@gmail.com

Have fun, can't wait to see what you have made.



Sunday, December 4, 2011

Angels From the Realms of Glory

And suddenly there was with the angel 
a multitude of the heavenly host
praising God, and saying,
 Glory to God in the highest, 
and on earth peace, 
good will toward men.  
Luke 2:13-14

Courtesy of The Graphics Fairy

Angels from the realms of glory,
Wing your flight o’er all the earth;
Ye who sang creation’s story
Now proclaim Messiah’s birth.

Come and worship, come and worship,
Worship Christ, the newborn King.
1816 ~ James Montgomery
Free Christmas Carol for you
The digital image below was made with one of the great images from The Graphics Fairy and the hymn above which I scanned from an old hymnal in my collection.  


I have a few more Christmas carols that I've scanned and will share them with you this week.  Thanks so much for stopping by today.