The Christmas Story

I love the story of Christmas. Not the one about Santa and the elves in the North Pole. But the one about our Savior being born!

In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to their own town to register.

So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Saviorhas been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
    and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.

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But So Is God’s Power and Love…

“Evil is everywhere, but so is God’s power and love.” (Billy Graham)

I saw this quote on twitter the other day, and I found it really powerful. With the recent shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, this quote has made me think a lot about our world and society. 

Our world is messed up. Plain and simple. There is more poverty than wealth, violent cultures, starvation, persecution of Christians, bullying, and I could go on and on. I’ve found myself asking, “Why do I live in such a society?” That answer is simple. God has put me here at this time to be his hands and feet. It won’t be easy though. I’ve been bullied for being a Christian. Christians are martyred everyday all over the world. Yet, God expects me to love and serve his children. This is where that quote comes in. With all the evil in the world, you’d think we’d be stomped as Christians. But that’s what I love, that God’s love and power are so much stronger than all forces of evil. 

So I’m ready. Ready to do all for God. Ready to serve him. To be persecuted just as he was. I will face evil along the way, but I know God will always be here.  

Just to Encourage You…

I have so many favorite bible verses, and I bet you do too! I just wanted to share some with you. If you’d like, I’d love for you to share some of yours with me too!

(Nahum 1:7) The Lord is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him…I love this verse for so many reasons! Whether I’m feeling down or just want to praise God for how much he loves me, this verse sticks out to me!

(James 1:27) Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. This is God’s command to us, and I want to follow it with all I do!

(Joshua 1:9) Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go. Knowing God is with me all the time and anytime I need him is such an incredible feeling!

(Romans 1:16) For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it’s the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes…Preach it! Seriously, for all God has done for me, how can I be ashamed to tell others!

(Acts 1:8) But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all of Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth. I love this verse!! It’s telling us to shine for God in our hometown, our nation, and then to the world!

(Exodus 14:14) The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still. God will fight for us and we don’t even have to do anything! Amazing!

I hope these verses encourage you as much as they do me!

Closer Than Ever

When I found out my bestfriend would be moving out of state to Georgia, I was heartbroken. Even though we lived almost an hour apart and only saw each other once a week, this still devastated me. There were nights I just cried to my mom that it wasn’t fair! After they moved away, we texted 24/7 and we both got a Skype so we could talk face to face. We talk more and are probably closer than we’ve ever been because of this move. We still talk about if public or home school is better, God, friends, and boys. I enjoy talking to her everyday after school…our new little tradition. Of course, I miss getting to see her and her crazy huge family, but I’m so excited I’ll get to spend four weeks with her in Africa!

Alyse and Anna

Alyse and Anna

At the Georgia Aquarium

At the Georgia Aquarium

With Lillian, Alyse's little sister.

With Lillian, Alyse’s little sister.

No words to describe.

No words to describe.

Sleeping after a long week at Beach Week.

Sleeping after a long week at Beach Week.

Derby Race at Church.. Theme: Senior Citizens

Derby Race at Church.. Theme: Senior Citizens

Camping

Camping

My 13th Birthday

My 13th Birthday