Christmas Devotional reading


As I did for Thanksgiving, I want to take the next few weeks leading up to Christmas and post several things — anecdotes, quotes, jokes, poems, prose, etc. — related to the holidays. I have been writing and compiling what started out as a newsletter but ended up as a 12-16 page booklet for our ladies’ group at church for six years now. I love it: I think it is my favorite ministry. Usually some part of it touches on the holiday or season at hand, so I have collected a lot of things in my files over the years that I would like to share with you.

I’ve already posted one of my favorites, a Christmas-based I Cor. 13. I think I need to read that at least once a week in December. Today I want to list some excellent Christmas devotional reading.

I have mentioned Creative Ladies Ministry many time before: if you have any kind of ministry with ladies’ groups or ever have to plan a banquet or retreat, this is the place to go for tons of great ideas. But the site is great for personal use as well. Julia’s devotionals are not for reproducing on web sites or blogs, but she does allow them to be used for ladies’ newsletters and meetings and such. You can consult her terms of service on her site if you are interested. And of course you can enjoy just reading them for yourself. Here are a few of her Christmas devotionals: A Sweet Christmas, Baking Up Christmas, Salvation’s Plan of ChristmasWorth Celebrating. Julia also designs some beautiful graphics: (The graphic above is from one of her sets). Julia recently put all of her Christmas devotional and other links in one place here. (Edited  to add: I apologize for the broken links: Julia changed her main site address. As of 12/06/09 they are all repaired: please let me know if you find a broken link.)

Annie’s December Holiday Page has tons of links and good stuff to read.

Elisabeth Elliot is one of my favorite people for many reasons. I received her newsletters for many years and hated to see them discontinued. Some of the Christmas-related thoughts from those newsletters stood out to me: Are Christmas Trees Okay? (note the link just goes to the top of the newsletter and you may have to scroll down to the article in question),
Christmas Is a Thing Too Wonderful, The Mother of the Lord, Crowned Because He Suffered, The Lord: Hidden, Weak, and Helpless, Do You Believe in Santa Claus?, The Nativity, Joy to the World, An Unusual Christmas Celebration, A Quieter Christmas, How Much Is Enough?, A Silver Star in a Cave, Christmas On a Bed of Pain, Little Mary.

Finally, the morning and evening readings from C. H. Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening have stayed with me for years.

Happy reading and meditating!

(Graphics copyright ©2006 Julia Bettencourt. Used with permission.)

See also:

Mary’s Virginity

Ten free gifts for Christmas

For God so loved that He gave…

Mary’s Dream

If I were a goose

The Perfect Christmas

Christmas Grief

Christmas quotes.

Christmas funnies or jokes #1 and #2.

The Primary Purpose of a Home.

12 thoughts on “Christmas Devotional reading

  1. Thank you for visiting me. And thank you too for all those wonderful places to visit. It’s rather late at night, but I think I’ll come back and visit a few as soon as I can.

  2. A friend just showed me this site! What a blessing- I can read some of the devotionals in sharing time for church service. THANK YOU!!!! Karen Arp

  3. Pingback: Christmasy links « Stray Thoughts

  4. I don’t know enough about your pastor’s sermon to know why he referred to this as a controversy. I don’t think there’s any controversy about the fact that Luke’s Gospel uses the Greek word for “virgin” or that the Gospel presents Mary as a virgin at the time of Christ’s birth.

    The translation of “young woman” comes from Isaiah 7:14. This is the scripture Luke tells us is fulfilled in Mary’s pregnancy.

    Luke is quoting the Septuagent (a Greek translation of the Old Testament) and this translation used the Greek word for “virgin.” If we look at the Masoritic Texts (the Hebrew version of the OT) we see that the word is more properly translated “young woman.”

    I think what your pastor is probably referring to is the fact that several versions of the Bible, starting with the Revised Standard Version, have translated Isaiah 7:14 as saying”young woman.” This upset some conservative Christians who assumed the choice was intended as an attack on the doctrine of the Virgin Birth. This was one of several such changes that prompted the creation of the New International Version as a defense of traditional doctrine (NIV translates Isaiah 7:14 as “virgin.”)

    But the RSV committee was not trying to undermine the idea of the Virgin birth at all. They simply wanted to translate the Bible as faithfully as possible using the best scholarship available.

    I think the best way to understand these scriptures is to be aware that Isaiah’s words can be read in two ways, each of which was true in its time. If you look at the whole of Isaiah 7 you will see that it a scene in which God is speaking to King Ahaz who is worried about threat of imminent war. God assures Ahaz that, in the time it takes a young women to conceive, bear a son, and raise him to the age of 12, the threat will be gone.

    That is all that the people of Isaiah’s time understood the passage to mean but, in Luke’s time, the evangelist looked at that scripture with new eyes and say that God had placed a whole layer of beautiful meaning there that remained hidden until the birth of Christ.

  5. Pingback: Christmas Reading « Stray Thoughts

  6. Thank you for your 10 free gifts of Christmas. We used it with verses about gifts for our Christmas Day devotions 2011. THANK you again! Bonita

  7. Pingback: A bloggy look back at 2012 « Stray Thoughts

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