{Still} More.

I stepped outside this afternoon and made my way down the streets, classical Christmas carols playing on the radio in my car, messy and strewn with lost mittens, church handouts and water bottles … just a quick errand to do for our home…I knew it would be busy in town, but there was no other option.


Looking around the parking lot of the store, there was not a vacant spot to be found. The stores were bustling, the people were rushing, packages in hands, bags in arms,  lineups lengthening with every minute … when I finally found a spot to park the truck, I made my way into the store to find displays heavy with Christmas ornaments, gifts for everyone on your list, that last minute item you realized ‘you needed’ when standing in the long line, the hustle and the frantic push of the people only days away from a deadline. Men sighed as they waited in the long line to the till, people checked their watches, keeping track of the hour with every passing second. A tired baby cried. Christmas carols played faintly in the noisy background.

I’ve been there before.

Late night wrapping sessions. Midnight trips to the local department store days before Christmas to fill stockings of little ones. Random purchases of gifts that will probably be re-gifted. Cards, sent to addresses, that will just be tossed January 1st.

I wanted to jump on the store counter, fling my hands upward and shout out … “THERE’S MORE!
There’s more than this! There’s SO MUCH MORE!”

For this season, in the grace and quiet, we are finding more. More in less. And more in God.


[Yes, we are still giving {simple} gifts to loved ones and neighbours, but they are small and mostly homemade. I’m not suggesting exchanging presents is wrong or selfish  – there is so much joy in giving presents to loved ones and finding that special gift for those you care about … but, this is just a life lesson we, in our family, in our home, are learning and humbly embracing.]

With my errand  complete, I quickly returned to my truck and within minutes found myself on the doorsteps of my home. I opened the wreath-laden door and noises spilled out from the entrance like music bubbling up from inside. Laughter, some crying, a tired toddler, a husband home from his work at the funeral home, children playing horses, painting Christmas ornaments, dinner simmering on the stove, a baby crawling to greet her mommy.

And I smiled. Big.
Inside and out.

This is where our Christmas is found. I know we hear it all the time – we know Christmas is not found in the store. We know it’s not found in the perfect gift. We know it’s not found in the prettiest wrapping or the best laid decorations or magazine-ready dinner tables.

But we do REALLY know? … it’s found in an amazing birth of a baby. In our family. In sharing a memory.  In our home. In our hearts. In Jesus.



 “What is Christmas if there never was a Saviour,
wrapped in a manger,

What is Christmas without Christ?”

[homemade Jesus in a manger craft from today]


For without Him,  we too would be rushing about and running here and there, busying ourselves and our children with non-eternal activities.

Every day this month, our family has taken up the challenge of trying to do something to bless someone. A stranger, a friend, our pastor, a grandma. Yesterday, when the girls handed our [sweet] post lady a chocolate bar to cheer her on her busy day, they saw her big smile, her thankfulness  …

And when she walked away back to delivering a massive pile of holiday mail, our six year old  -with freckles sprinkled on her button nose and her first wiggly tooth inside her smile –  turned to me and said, “That sure made her happy, didn’t it? She really liked that.”


Those are the gifts we are trying to give this year. The unexpected ones.


And when the girls & their dad walked to the local nursing home and delivered cookies, candy canes and Christmas cards that they all signed the day before, we wondered … aren’t these the gifts we are to give?

Later that evening, the Christmas carols were ringing faintly from the living room while the Happy Mortician {daddy} and our daughter worked together on a project …

…making crosses to remind us of a deeper reason behind Jesus’ birth.

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given:

and the government shall be upon his shoulder:
and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor,

The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.

Isaiah 9:6



I read this the other day …

“You’re doing Christmas all wrong.
Remember when you were a kid … you waited for it all year, it wasn’t just the presents …
it was the fact that everyone seemed a little nicer, all those silly little traditions that meant so much, …
Now, everyone just blows it out of proportion.
It’s all stressed out and angry.
Every year I hear someone say ‘I can’t wait for Christmas to be over.’

For me the saddest day of the year is December 26th.”

This year and every year after, I don’t want to do Christmas wrong.

I want to teach my children and myself that it’s not MORE than just about attending church on Christmas Eve or reading the Bible story on Christmas morning … it’s so much more.

I want to do Christmas right.


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