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Christmas Light

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Principled
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I thought that while it’s been shown elsewhere just how watered down the Christmas message of love is becoming in our increasingly secular world, I would like to start a thread on the real meaning of Christmas – or Christ’s Mass (from the [url]Old English[/url] Crīstesmæsse)

These two phrases resonate with me:

Jesus Is The Reason For The Season
Put Christ back into Christmas

To me, Christmas is all about love. It's God's love for humanity and it was Jesus living that life of love that destroyed all lack, limitation, disharmony and suffering, that really shows the light that destroyed the darkness.

Though there is uncertainly as to the actual date Jesus was born, celebrating his birth just after the winter solstice, when light starts growing stronger again (in the Northern Hemisphere) was an obvious choice because, as ancient prophecy had foretold:

“The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of deep darkness a light has dawned.” Isaiah 9:2

Jesus said of his spiritual mission:

"I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." (John 8:12), and he proved that practically as well as metaphorically, whenever he restored the sight of blind people.

Dies Natalis Solis Invicti means "the birthday of the Unconquered Sun", a festival inaugurated by the Roman emperor Aurelian (AD 270-275) to celebrate the sun god and celebrated at the winter solstice. During the reign of the emperor Constantine (306-337), Christian writers assimilated this feast as the birthday of Jesus, associating him with the 'sun of righteousness' mentioned in another Biblical prophecy, in Malachi 4:2 “…for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its rays”.

It is that aspect of Christ, the Sun of Righteousness, rising with healing in its rays, that I want to dedicate this thread to.I hope anyone who has an uplifting, healing or inspiring story showing the real meaning of Christmas will also share. As usual, I went to the now searchable archives of the Christian Science Publishing Society from the 1880’s and found nearly 5,000 articles, poems and audios associated with Christmas!!! Don’t worry, I’m not posting them all! 😮

Thought I'd start off with this very touching story of a beautiful and unselfish Christmas gift of love, especially as it mentions a Nativity scene. [url]"The Pillow Doll" [/url]

Love and peace,

Judy

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Principled
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Here's a heart-warming Christmas tale from the Reader's Digest:

[url]Christmas Stories: The Gold and Ivory Tablecloth[/url]
A pastor’s impulsive purchase leads to an incredible reunion. Coincidence—or divine guidance? You be the judge in this story of a true Christmas miracle.

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Principled
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Here's a lovely healing that that must have brought such a sense of freedom. It starts with a gift of love at Christmas:

[url] "My first real Christmas tree" [/url]
Every year, down it came from the attic. The fake Christmas tree. It wasn't that my family didn't want a real one—as a young girl, I couldn't have one because of allergies. I also couldn't eat a number of foods, including peanuts, fish, chocolate, tomatoes, and cheese. I was also allergic to perfume, flowers, dust, feathers, cats, and more. But Christmas trees were near the top of the list!

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Principled
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This is such a sweet story:
[url]Simple Faith[/url]
Who knew my son would learn the lesson of Christmas at a Jewish preschool?

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Principled
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[url]"A CHRISTMAS HEALING"[/url]
When Nick and our daughter finally arrived home from the hospital, he said that the doctors had diagnosed her condition as a probable case of infantile paralysis. But as it was Christmas Day and they were short-staffed, the doctors had told my husband to take her home, try to enjoy spending the day with family, and bring her back the next morning.

That must have been an unforgettable Christmas!

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Principled
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Here are three beautiful Christmas poems for you:

Inn or Stable

How often do we have to choose
between the “inn” and “stable”?

"Christmas song"

Deep within the heart
this song is born...

[url]"Christmas star" [/url]
Shine out quiet star.
Wordless guide of shepherds
and wise men...

Love and peace,

Judy

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Principled
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As I'm sure everyone is also feeling - my heart goes out to the people of Glasgow and especially the families and friends of those killed in the tragic accident. That terrible helicopter crash was only a few weeks before Christmas 2013. It's terrible to lose a loved one, especially so suddenly at any time of year, but at Christmas, it must be just so much more difficult, with everyone around you wanting to celebrate and have fun and family togetherness. This is a time when Glasgow - and especially those who have lost loved ones, need our prayers.

I hope this article and poem will comfort and encourage anyone reading this. The article was written the first Christmas after 9/11 when the US had been shaken to the core:

[url]"A desire for Christmas" [/url]
A few years ago, near Christmas, our youngest son was killed by a hit-and-run driver on a dark, rainy night. The first thoughts I had at the time were not "peace" or "goodwill." I was in anguish. I'm sure I felt the way many Americans are feeling now. The loss of my loved one was unimaginable. There seemed to be no way out of sorrow.

[url]"Christmas sings to you" [/url]
Dear heart, missing a loved one,
the Christ lights and fills every
dark and empty space.

Love and peace,

Judy

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Charis
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At this time of year — especially with so much conflict, fear, suffering and rampant materialism going on in the world — I'm sure there are others who, like me, just want to take time to contemplate the deeper meaning of Christmas. This time of year has, of course, been celebrated in many cultures since ancient times, as the winter solstice marks the beginning of lengthening days — a "new birth" of light and hope for the world.

A while back, I found this poem that reflects on a picture from a Christmas card and draws a perhaps slightly unexpected meaning from it. I took a look online and found what I'm pretty sure is the image that the poem describes (it was on a free "wallpaper" site for computer backgrounds, so I'm afraid I don't know who the artist is).

Whatever your background or faith, I hope you too enjoy this simple message of the power of divine Love.

[url]"Meditations on a Christmas card" [/url]

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Perhaps the true and deeper meaning of Christmas has been set aside, which is sad, though I think Jesus would be glad at all the happy, excited children and general sense of goodwill among people.

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Let there be peace on earth - and let it begin with me ....

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Principled
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Perhaps the true and deeper meaning of Christmas has been set aside, which is sad, though I think Jesus would be glad at all the happy, excited children and general sense of goodwill among people.

Yes, I'm sure Mountaineer. One of the most special things about this season is that people think about others more, they think about giving rather than getting and I feel for one that there is more kindness around, so I'm sure Jesus would be happy abut that!

And thanks Charis for the lovely poem!

Love and peace,

Judy

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Principled
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The editor's column on the Daily News Briefing from csmonitor.com today was a very thoughtful little piece and I've tried doing a screen shot:

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Crowan
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Although if we make it to a millennium in the future we'll have to change our ways of life pretty drastically. The way we're going, we won't make another century.

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Principled
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You are absolutely right Crowan - it's time that mankind woke up and realised that we are all one and that caring about each other and our planet is far more important than tribal, political and religious divides (or the pursuit of more power, wealth and possessions).

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Crowan
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This was posted on a FB page I follow. It's not my belief system, of course, but it has a certain appeal. It's closer to how those of my friends who are Christians think.

Away in a manger, no crib for a bed,
The little Lord Jesus laid down his sweet head.
The stars in the bright sky looked down where he lay,
The little Lord Jesus asleep on the hay.

The next part of the story is not often told,
The cattle are filthy, the manger is cold.
Far out of their hometown, the young family cowers,
Unsure of their future, and afraid of the powers.

Why this way, Lord Jesus? Why not comfort and bling?
Why not a grand entrance, as a rich ruling king?
You could have had power, you could have had wealth,
You’d have founded Your kingdom, with no risk to Your health.

But Your way Lord Jesus, is affirming the meek,
Provoking compassion, bias to the weak,
Reversal of order, reversal of worth,
The new Jesus kingdom, our heaven on earth!

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Principled
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That's lovely Crowan - never heard it before. Thanks. 🙂

Love and peace,

Judy

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