We began this Advent season just like we always do, opening our Jesse Tree devotional beginning on December first. We celebrate the Christmas season, and we do so with purpose as to not morph into what is so common in western culture...even christian culture. I hate the materialism that surrounds Christmas. Our family chooses to celebrate Christ and His first coming to earth as Savior of the world. We choose to give Christmas meaning for our children. One way we do this is to take our bibles out each night a read scripture rich with meaning behind the Christmas story. While the typical Luke 2 account of the birth of Christ is priceless, there is so much more to behold through His word. It is absolutely amazing how Christ's coming was foreshadowed as far back as Creation. Our children have enjoyed in recent years, being able to partake in the actual reading of the scripture. Hearing my children recite God-breathed words is one of the most precious things ever. All of them participate in some way, listening, reading, hanging ornaments etc. It is precious time with the Word and simply time when we can all be still, together. When everyone is sleeping, Lila has even been involved in some Jesse tree activity. We have learned this year that leaving our tree in an easily accessible location will result in a few , seemingly specific, ornaments will go missing. Her favorites are the earth and Jacob's ladder!! We have now located the tree on the high bookshelf, which has worked this season!
Each night we read a special devotion together, pray and one child gets the privilege of hanging a handmade ornament on our tiny Jesse tree. Each ornament is symbolic of the biblical truth behind the devotion, which helps tremendously with memory recall, for our children. We look most forward to hanging the symbolic ornament that represents the birth of our Savior. Each year the kids love to be the one who gets to hang the ornament on Christmas morning before a gift is ever touched. This year the way the cards fell, Abe got the treat of hanging the ornament that holds the greatest meaning. Our Savior came! And, we shall celebrate His birth.