4th of July

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As a Christian, one of the questions that haunt us every year is how to keep Christ at the center of Christmas. The ďChristmas SeasonĒ used to start after Thanksgiving. Today, Labor Day seems to be the kick-off. The commercialism of the Christmas Season pulls at us from every direction and itís difficult to resist every enticement.Although I have devotional aids for other occasions, my main focus is on Christmas because of it's strong secular pull.  There is an ample amount of Christmas specials both on television and at the movies, but the best that these secular stories can do after abolishing presents and other pagan customs, is to say Christmas is about family and friends. Christmas is not about family and friends; itís about the birth of Godís son. If your family and friends are not around, or if you have no family or friends, CHRISTMAS STILL IS.No one knows when Christ was actually born, and it was most likely not in December, but the 25th of December is the day most of the world has put aside to remember His birth, and it has been labeled Christís Mass. Anyone claiming to be observing the birth of Christ in this season needs to have a good understanding of why.

So what do we need to do to honor God on this day as well as the season? Why did we, and still to this day, need this child to be born? Why was it so important for Godís Word to become flesh?The answers to these questions are woven through the Old Testament in Godís promises, prophecies and miracles. Focusing on these and working on a better understanding will greatly enhance your Christmas season and hopefully help you to abandon some of the materialistic traditions that are dragging you down. We've been doing this for over 15 years and it has worked great for us.Traditions like Advent wreaths and Advent calendars donít necessarily focus on why the birth of Christ was, and still is, so important. Many people are not even aware of what some of these traditions represent. The Jesse Tree is a way to help children and adults get a better understanding of what and why we are celebrating.Jesse was the father of King David. The idea of the Jesse Tree comes from Isaiah 11:1-9, where God promises a discouraged nation that the glory they remember from Davidís time will come again. They will have another king from Jesseís family, in whose reign the whole earth will know God. As a Christian, we see that promise fulfilled in Jesus, and so we use a Jesse Tree and decorate it with reminders of how God prepared the world for that kingdom.What is a Jesse Tree?

Starting on December 1st with an empty banner or tree, a reminder ornament is hung each day until Christmas Day when the Christ child in the manger and star are placed at the top. A Bible verse is read, and the story reviewed. These devotions allow time every day for sharing with your children, or meditating with God's Word on your own.

We started our Jesse Tree family devotions over fifteen years ago, and have used it with children from infancy to age 25. It has helped us focus on God, and has become the most meaningful tradition of the season. You too can make the Jesse Tree a tradition that can come to be the most memorable part of the season.This site will be bringing you Jesse Tree kits as well as devotional aids to help Christians throughout the year. Finding time to do this has not been easy, but I'm starting with the devotions and patterns for ornaments. I hope to have kits soon.  

Contact me if you have reached this site and would like more information on the Jesse Tree or family devotions for other times of the year.

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