The third candle (pink or rose) "CANDLE OF JOY" means the angels sang a message of JOY! (Luke 2 7-15)
Sunday, December 13 – open box #14
Verse: Matthew 2:7-8
7Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared. 8He sent them to Bethlehem and said, "Go and make a careful search for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him."
Today you lit the 3rd candle which is the candle of JOY that Jesus is coming soon. Have you ever thought of JOY this way before
Jesus Others Yourself
If you put Jesus first, others second and yourself last, you will experience true JOY this Christmas season! Celebrate and feel the JOY that comes from knowing Christ!
Have everyone in your family take turns sharing something about themselves that they think makes God joyful. It can be difficult to get started...sometimes we don't want to think about the good in ourselves. But our salvation in Jesus makes us ABLE to please God and it helps to remember that the good in us is His Holy Spirit working inside us. When God sees even the smallest bit of HIS goodness reflected back to Him from us, He rejoices! And, as Jesus shares in Luke 15, "In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents."
Prayer: Don’t forget to keep doing your prayer chain – also pray that we can Celebrate and feel the JOY that comes from knowing Christ!
Monday, December 14 – open box #15
Verse: Matthew 2:9
9After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen in the east[e] went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was.
Christmas caroling and sing JOYFULLY to the Lord
Fruit Loop Garland
This is much easier for children to handle than a needle and popcorn and it turns out much prettier. All you do is string fruit loops on ribbon or string until you have enough to go on your tree. You can either do one long string or give each child their own piece and then tie them together. The end effect is like a huge one of those edible candy necklaces I used to get when I was a little girl!!
Tuesday, December 15 – open box #16
Verse: Matthew 2:10-11
10When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. 11On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh.
Activity: Because I know we all had great intentions to do all the activities – use this day to catch up or finish the ones you may not have done or finished
Wednesday, December 16 – open box #17
Verse: Matthew 2:12-15
12And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.
The Escape to Egypt
13When they had gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. "Get up," he said, "take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Herod is going to search for the child to kill him." 14So he got up, took the child and his mother during the night and left for Egypt, 15where he stayed until the death of Herod. And so was fulfilled what the Lord had said through the prophet: "Out of Egypt I called my son."
Activity: Go see a live nativity as a family
Thursday, December 17 – open box #18
Verse: Galatians 4:4-5
But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, 5to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons.
Make Your Own Wrapping Paper This is a fun and easy craft that only takes paper, paint or ink pads and some creative materials for stamping images onto your paper! Kids really enjoy wrapping a gift in their own homemade paper. You can use butcher paper, freezer paper, tissue paper, brown paper from a grocery bag, newsprint or newspaper or even scraps of fabric. Here are some ideas for making a print on your paper:
-Sponge paint over the entire paper or in a pattern.
-Dip string or yarn in paint and lay it on the paper in a swirling patter (or in lines, whatever you like). Let it sit for a few seconds and then carefully lift up the string, leaving the pattern on your paper.
-Cut and apple, orange or other fruit/vegetable in half and use as a stamp. Gold or silver paint looks especially nice!
-Stamp with store-bought rubber stamps or make your own with a potato.
-Use silk holly leaves (or other leaves, flowers, etc.) as a stamp, with ink or paint.
-Dip baby (or mini) mittens in paint and use as a stamp.
-Carefully splatter paint by flicking it off the end of a paintbrush or dipping a drinking straw in paint and then blowing it out onto the paper (NOT for little ones and make sure you use a drop cloth!)
-Use a pretty metallic marker and simply write a Christmas message over and over in a pattern on the paper
-Glue torn pieces of multi-colored tissue paper in a pattern or all over the paper to make it look like stained glass
-Paint your paper in a solid color. Allow it to dry and then paint over top with another color. After the second color has dried, crumple up the paper and then smooth out...the bottom color shows through in a wonderful pattern!
-Glue doilies of different sizes onto your paper (colored paper is especially good) or cut out paper snowflakes to glue on.
-Experiment with other materials: crayons, markers, puffy paint, chalk (spray with hair spray afterwards to ), glitter glue, stencils or...? Use your imagination!
-Make a popcorn and cranberry garland design on your paper by stamping with packing peanuts (in white) and alternating with a round shape (in red). You can use a cranberry cut in half for the round shape if you like.
*These ideas can be used on gift bags as well!
Friday, December 18 – open box #19
Verse: Ephesians 2:8-9
8For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9not by works, so that no one can boast.
Activity: Family Night – Talk about the bible verses, activities, and prayers that you have done over the past three weeks – What was your favorite? What have you learned?
Put your feet up, make some hot tea or cocoa, snuggle with your kids and/or hubby under a blanket and take a break!
Prayer – Have your kids say a prayer – help them think of things to pray for – encourage them – show them
Saturday, December 19 – Open box #20
Verse: 1 John 4:7-16
7Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. 8Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. 9This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son[a] into the world that we might live through him. 10This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for[b] our sins. 11Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.
13We know that we live in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. 14And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. 15If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God. 16And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.
God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him.
Bake cookies and give to local pantry (we are giving them to a place called Trillium Woods – a place using hospice – http://faithhospicecare.org (explain what hospice is all about) the cookies are for the family members who visit the cafeteria.)
Best Ever Sugar Cookies
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Directions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). In a small bowl, stir together flour, baking soda, and baking powder. Set aside. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in egg and vanilla. Gradually blend in the dry ingredients. Roll rounded teaspoonfuls of dough into balls, and place onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven, or until golden. Let stand on cookie sheet two minutes before removing to cool on wire racks.
Or use Pillsbury Sugar cookies – roll it out with a roller and cut your own shapes
Let God's great love bring you joy and peace.