The Word became flesh and blood,
    and moved into the neighborhood.
We saw the glory with our own eyes,
    the one-of-a-kind glory,
    like Father, like Son,
Generous inside and out,
    true from start to finish. John 1:14, The Message

This is the week. Tomorrow is Christmas Eve, the next Christmas Day. All our preparing, shopping, baking, and planning often come down to these two days.

Where has your striving led you this year? Have you worked yourself into a frenzy, setting yourself up for disappointment (again)? Have you put everything off until the last minute, and now find yourself impatient with family, friends, and the mailman? Or are you taking intentional moments to #celebratetheseason?

Take just a few minutes today, maybe with a good cup of strong coffee (or hot chocolate, but make sure it’s the best kind), and reflect on the beauty of Christ. Enjoy the twinkling lights and beautiful decorations, smell the cookies in the oven, and give thanks for the beauty around you. Remember that it is ALL a gift – a beautifully wrapped gift from our Savior. “Give thanks to the Lord for He is good. His love endure forever.” (1 Chronicles 16:34)

Recipes and Traditions

For decades, a branch of my family tree has had a reunion of sorts on Christmas Eve. We have turkey and dressing, sides, desserts, kids play, adults tell tall tales, and generally everyone has a great time. It is a standing date and time on the calendar, and no one really ever asks, “Are we doing it this year?” because it’s just assumed that we are.

When I was little, my aunt’s peanut butter balls (buckeyes to our friends from the north, but since we are most decidedly Southern, we don’t call them that) were a centerpiece for the little ones – myself and my cousins. The original recipe has been lost, but the one that I now use is a good substitute (courtesy of Katherine Magnuson). This is an easy candy to make, and kids can help. The recipe makes around 50 walnut-sized balls, so if you don’t need that many, you can reduce the amounts to suit your needs.

  • 3 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 3 cups peanut butter

Mix together to make a stiff playdough-like dough. Adjust amounts depending on how sticky or dry the dough is. Form into balls, and dip into chocolate bark. It’s really that easy!

Are you ready for Christmas to come? Are the gifts wrapped and the food prepared? What about your heart? Are you really ready for the coming of Christ, or is there no peace on earth (or at least, not in your house)? He is ready and waiting to give you that peace. Spend some time with Him today.