Christmas Poem 2016: A Christmas Letter to God

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*Holiday blogging break details at end of post.

Believe it or not, friends, I’ve been writing an annual Christmas poem for thirty-four years now. That’s a long time by anybody’s standards, isn’t it?

Sometimes I wonder how I’ll be able to come up with an idea for yet another Christmas poem, but I really shouldn’t worry. God is always faithful to give me the seed of an idea and then guide me as I write, helping me to find just the right words or turns of phrase. Yes, it usually takes a lot of trial and error to get there, but God is faithful to help me birth the finished project.

All of our abilities come from him, don’t they? I’m so grateful he’s given me the privilege of touching people’s hearts and lives through the written word. May you be blessed by this year’s poem, my friends!

A Christmas Letter to God

Dear Lord, Christmas finds us sending greetings
To loved ones far and near,
Cards and letters filled with love
And wishes for the coming year.

This year I long to send this letter
Overflowing with thanks and love
To you, my God, my Lord, my Savior,
My King and Counselor from above.

My message this Christmas is simple, Lord,
As I think of you coming to earth,
Coming to live among us,
Bringing new life, giving new birth.

My heart and my pen cry out today,
“Thank you, Father, for sending,
Thank you, Jesus, for coming,
Thank you, Spirit, for staying!”

With love,
Cheryl, 2016

“‘The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel’ (which means ‘God with us’).” Matthew 1:23 NIV

*What’s one thing you’d want to tell God if you wrote him a Christmas letter?

*I’ll be taking a blogging break until after the first of the year while everyone is busy preparing for and celebrating Christmas. May you enjoy sweet times with loved ones and have a truly blessed celebration of our Savior’s birth, my friends. See you in 2017!

*Flickr photo by E V Peters, Creative Commons License

Summer Photo Fun: Name This Location!

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Are you ready, friends, for some more Summer Photo Fun? Each year during July and early August (when my husband is on break from teaching), I feature some fun photo posts rather than my usual inspirational/devotional style posts. I like to take a more casual approach to blogging for a few weeks and hopefully you’ll still leave here feeling refreshed, encouraged, or nourished in some way.

Today let’s have a little “Name This Location” challenge. Who can tell me where the photo above was taken? Let’s see who can turn in the first correct guess!

I hope you’re having a wonderful summer and getting to do a little traveling and photo-taking of your own. Enjoy your location today wherever you are!

“‘I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go . . .’” Genesis 28:15a

*So what’s the location above? Good luck with your guess!

*My photo

*The new issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter, comes out next week. Sign-up is free and to the right!

Winner Plus Summer Photo Fun Kick-Off: Caption This

IMG_5442 Hey everyone, I’m back! And to start things off with some smiles, I’m announcing the winner of my Mother of the Bride Book Launch Giveaway plus kicking off my annual Summer Photo Fun here on the blog. Good times, huh?!

First things first—time to announce a winner! The winner of the gift assortment  including a signed copy of my book Mother of the Bride as well as some other special items is . . . Susan Best! Congrats, Susan! Hope you thoroughly enjoy each gift!

And now for Summer Photo Fun: For those of you who may be new here, each year during July and early August, I feature some fun photo posts rather than my usual inspirational/devotional style posts.

This part of summer is always topsy-turvy for me since my husband is on his break from teaching so I try to take a more casual approach to blogging for a few weeks. Since photos can really brighten our days and since I’ll also be including a verse from the Bible, my hope is that you’ll still leave here feeling refreshed or nourished in some way.

Let’s start with some Caption This fun. The photo above is of one of my twin grandsons (Isaiah) after enjoying one of Grandma’s love-filled chocolate chip cookies. The rest is up to you—how would you caption this photo?

Thanks as always for stopping by, friends. I hope my sweet Isaiah put a smile on your face today!

“May God be gracious to us and bless us and make his face shine on us,” Psalm 67:1

*The new issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter, comes out in early August. Sign-up is free and to the right!

*My photo

Last-Half-of-May Blogging Break

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The first half of May has been filled with work for me, and the last half will be filled with family—and some work, too, where I can sneak it in. I’m willing to bet it’s a jam-packed month for you, too, Mothers of the Bride. In fact, some of you may be throwing the event of a lifetime as we speak. Others may be gearing up for a summer wedding. Whatever our situations, I’m willing to bet the month of May is busy for all of us.

And so, dear MOBs, I’m going to apply my 2015 theme word rest to my life this month and declare a last-half-of-May blogging break again. It worked out so well for me last May that I think I’m going to make it an annual blogging tradition. Rest is good no matter what year we’re in, right?

I’ll resume regular posting on June 2, but in the meantime, why not peruse the list of Favorite Posts on the sidebar or use the drop-down feature in the Archives to spot some posts that might be especially helpful to you at this stage in your Mother of the Bride journey. I hope you find just the help and encouragement you need. All the best as you work with your daughter to plan the wedding of her dreams!

*You might also like to check out my Pinterest page. Among other things, it features eighteen wedding-related boards!

*The new issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter, came out earlier this month. It’s not too late to receive it. Sign-up is free and to the right!

*Flickr photo by Silvia Sala, Creative Commons License

Last-Half-of-May Blogging Break

6065053437_b6cceb1fd0_z

The first half of May has been filled with work for me, and the last half will be filled with family—and some work, too, where I can sneak it in. I’m willing to bet it’s a jam-packed month for you as well. In fact, I think May might be second only to December where the busy factor is concerned!

And so, dear readers, I’m going to apply my 2015 theme word rest to my life this month and declare a last-half-of-May blogging break again. It worked out so well for me last May that I think I’m going to make it an annual blogging tradition. Rest is good no matter what year we’re in, right?

I’ll resume regular posting on June 2, but in the meantime, let me leave you with a beautiful passage from the Word of God. May the King of Glory bless you and be your strength today and always!

“Lift up your heads, O you gates;
be lifted up, you ancient doors,
that the King of glory may come in.
Who is this King of glory?
The LORD strong and mighty,
the LORD mighty in battle.
Lift up your heads, O you gates;
lift them up, you ancient doors,
that the King of glory may come in.
Who is he, this King of glory?
The LORD Almighty—
he is the King of glory.” Psalm 24:7-10

*How has the King of Glory blessed you this month?

*The new issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter, came out earlier this month. It’s not too late to receive it. Sign-up is free and to the right!

*Flickr photo by Silvia Sala, Creative Commons License