Journey to the Manger: Celebrate Jesus!

On Christmas morning, Jackson and Lauren stand by our Journey to the Manger calendar, complete with Jesus!

On Christmas morning, Jackson and Lauren stand by our Journey to the Manger calendar, complete with Jesus!

Our Journey to the Manger has finally reached the stable, and we are celebrating the birth of Jesus this Christmas Day!

When we all woke up this morning, we gathered around our Advent calendar. Jackson reminded us that our Christmas countdown began with our Heavenly Father, and ends today with Jesus. Christmas is wrapped up in the blessings of God! God came to us at Christmas, offering Himself to us so we could personally know Him and feel His love.

Christmas is this:

God loved the world in this way: He gave His One and Only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.

– John 3:16

Jesus

Jesus

We celebrate God’s presence today, His salvation and sacrifice! We believe not just that Jesus came for all the world, but that He came for us.

Before we opened our gifts today, we sang Happy Birthday to Jesus and read the Christmas story in Luke 2. Later we will bake a birthday cake for our Savior!

This has been an amazing month of preparation, and now Christmas is here! We want to give special thanks to Focus on the Family and Thriving Family Magazine for the Journey to the Manger Advent Calendar.

May Jesus reign in your hearts this Christmas! It’s time to celebrate!!

Merry Christmas!

My Jesus Journey

We celebrated my birthday at our favorite local restaurant today!

We celebrated my birthday at our favorite local restaurant today!

Today is my birthday!

I’ve been looking forward to this birthday, when I turn 33. My husband turned this age last year, and I teased him that Jesus finished His ministry on the cross at age 33, so he’d better make the year count, too.

This morning when I woke up, my first thought was, Jesus was the exact age I am now as He powerfully preached that the Kingdom of Heaven was at hand, always had time to heal people’s bodies and hearts, knelt as a servant to wash His friends’ feet and willingly gave up His life so that I could truly live.

To think Jesus was only 33 when all that came to be is overwhelming. I can just imagine the priests and religious elders of that day thinking – who does this young pup think he is, acting like he owns the place? – when in fact, HE DOES. The depth of his love and compassion for each person, the way He stayed available to those who needed Him, the tears He wept over Jerusalem as He entered, the life-saving words He spoke to the criminal next to him as He suffered – Jesus’s testimony convicts my sinful heart.

As I anticipated my birthday yesterday, I thought about what God would want of me during my 33rd year of life. Though I joked that Matt better make his 33rd year a good one, I realized those words were now directed at me. Time is too easy to waste, and I am a pro at letting moments and opportunities slip by.  So, I asked God, how can I best spend this year?

God drew me straight to His Word.

Many people have set out to write accounts about the events that have been fulfilled among us. They used the eyewitness reports circulating among us from the early disciples. Having carefully investigated everything from the beginning, I also have decided to write a careful account for you, most honorable Theophilus, so you can be certain of the truth of everything you were taught.

Luke 1:1-4

I am going to spend this year walking with Jesus. I want to personally see and experience again Jesus’s journey from heaven to the cross and back again. To do this, I am going to try to place myself in Theophilus’ shoes, and receive the letter of Luke as my own. Jesus’ story is my story. My life has no meaning or purpose apart from the Gospel.

I will try to record my Jesus Journey, verse-by-verse through Luke’s account, on the blog each week, in addition to our family’s everyday God experiences. I need accountability, because I am great at starting but not always at finishing. I would like to personally invite you to join me on my 33rd year adventure and see Jesus through fresh eyes, reading for the first time as Theophilus might have, so that we can be certain of the truth. Sign up to receive blog posts in your email, and come back often!