Friday, January 3, 2014

Christmas Past -- New Years Forward

While to some Christmas is past,  we at A Pen for Your Thoughts see the Christ of Christmas remain in our hearts, our lives, and our minds from the beginning of the year until the end.
I am pleased to be able to share with you, Author Tina Pinson, who is going to bless us with news about her newly released book, Christmas in Shades of Gray. 

It was the week before Christmas and there where I lived,
temperatures were nearing 70 and short sleeves were in.
Granted for some in frigid weather that sounded rather strange,
but it did cool down some and we did get some rain.

The houses were decorated with twinkling lights.
The desert was lit, even Cactus and Palm Trees were bright.

I wore my shorts and sometimes sandals too, at night
if it cooled down a little jacket would do.
I set up my stockings, advent calendar, and tree.
In hopes my spirit would find Christmas Glee.

I hung stockings and garland and a couple of wreaths.
I had cookies and candies and sweet treats to eat.
I played the Christmas music, searching for the Christmas Cheer,
But in truth, I must say something was off this year.

Perhaps I longed for Christmases like before.
For frosty windowpanes and ice crunching beneath my feet when I stepped out my door.
Perhaps I longed to see my breath paint the air before me,
to see Christmas lights glisten with the moonlight on new fallen snow.

Maybe I missed the icicles lining the eaves of my house,
little prisms that giving off their own little glow.
Or being able to light a fire for more than ambiance's sake knowing it would keep me warm.

Perhaps it was because I was far away from some of my family and friends.
I couldn’t be at the large family gatherings, laughing over stories
or making memories with them.

Maybe I knew when I wrapped all the gifts, most would be sent out
and I would miss the smiles when they were opened.
Or maybe it was more than what I've listed above,
perhaps my mind was on so many other things, I'd forgotten what Christmas is for.

I'd forgotten that Christmas is more than presents and lights.
And more than tinsel or a fire's glow on a chilly night
 More than gathering with family and friends.
It's a timeless story with a gift that never ends.
It's about a tiny baby sent so long ago.

A gift wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger. A message of hope.
A seemingly insignificant child, carrying the gift of the Father's love for all mankind.

Was your Christmas missing something? Did it lack cheer?
 I pray you find the joy and hope and peace that comes from Jesus.
And it last for the whole year.

In Christmas in Shades of Gray, David is lying in a hospital bed, dying and feeling terribly alone. His children don't come to visit. One would but he lives too far away, the others just don't seem to care. And those children who don't seem to care, don't know Christ either. Fearing he won't be able to see them again in life let them how much he loves them. He prays that God will reach his children so he will see them in eternity.
A being comes to him and asks David, "What in your life merits God answering your prayer?" And David is at his wit's end to answer.  The being takes David on a whirlwind tour of his past looking for the answer, but David finds it when he remembers the great Christmas gift ever.
Christmas in Shades of Gray is the story of one man's insignificant life, an insignificant life that God sent his son to die for because this life meant the world to him. It is my prayer that if you're feeling insignificant or lonely this Christmas you'll find the beauty of the season and remember the True Gift of Christmas. And remember you are loved.
May the Blessing of Christmas be yours
through out (this new year)

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