Merry Christmas

Confucius is dead. Mohammad is dead. Shinto is dead. Buddha is dead, but Jesus is alive and therefore I can believe IN Jesus. I can’t believe in the others. They are all gone.

David Pawson, The Key Steps to Becoming a Christian, Part 3 (about 18:45)

I love the traditional celebration of Christmas on December 25th especially as Mario Murillo presented it yesterday in his post. However, placing the actual birth of Jesus at the beginning of the Jewish calendar, that is, on Nisan 1, opens up, for me, an unexpected fulfillment of prophecy.

Jonathan Cahn, a Messianic Christian pastor, made the case that Jesus was born on March 20, 6 BC. If you watch the 28 minute video, When Was Jesus REALLY Born??, (Jim Bakker Show November 12th, 2012), look for the following:
1) In the spring lambing season the shepherds would be in the fields at night attending the birth of the lambs.
2) These lambs from Bethlehem were the temple sacrificial lambs. By pointing out the sign of “a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger” (Luke 2:12 NIV), the angel was telling the shepherds to also attend the birth of Jesus.
3) Central events in the life of Jesus occurred on Jewish holy days: the Lamb Selection Day (Palm Sunday), Passover (Crucifixion), the Feast of First Fruits (Resurrection), and Shavuot (Pentecost). If His birth were a similarly central event it would likely occur on Nisan 1, the beginning of the Jewish calendar.
4) The birth year of 6 BC is suggested by an unusual occultation of Jupiter by the Moon in the constellation Aries that the Magi, or Zoroastrian astrologers, would have noticed in the spring. This would point them to the birth (occultation) of a king (Jupiter) in Judea (Aries).
5) The Tabernacle took nine months to complete like the period from conception to birth of a baby. It was set up on Nisan 1, “on the first day of the first month” (Exodus 40:2 NIV).

As Jonathan Cahn mentioned at the end of the video every time we receive Jesus it is day one, a new beginning. That would include today, December 25th, as well. And so I wish you a Merry Christmas and a new beginning.


Events

The winter solstice doesn’t bother us.
It happens this time every year.
It comes and goes. A few might care to know,
But no one feels any fear.

A birth we celebrate about this time
That happened once in ancient days
Still moves the heart with joyful gratitude.
We rise with shepherds singing praise.

Horizon – Six Sentence Story

Far be it from Joseph to doubt the angel even when he felt overwhelmed.

There wasn’t a guest room available but they could stay in the courtyard where animals were kept along with the other travelers the inn could not accommodate with rooms. While Joseph prepared a place for Mary and him to sleep her labor began. She gave birth under the stars wrapping her child in cloths and laying him in a manger.

Shortly after the birth shepherds found the child. They told everyone about an angel, the sign of a baby in a manger, and how the horizon filled with a heavenly host giving praise.


Denise offers the challenge word “horizon” to use in this week’s Six Sentence Story.

For a better understanding of what actually happened, see Matthew 1 and Luke 2. I owe the idea of a “courtyard” to David Pawson who described what the inn may have looked like in a lecture, The Church and Christmas – The Truth About Christmas Part 2 (starting about 20:00).

I am offering this as part of the Holiday Blogging Party that Crystal Grimes is hosting.


A very short story of mine, “Fresh Snow”, appeared in Whispers and Echoes. I am grateful to the editor for accepting it.

Horizon on Lake Michigan
GirlieOnTheEdge Denise Farley's six-sentence-stories icon
GirlieOnTheEdge Denise Farley’s six-sentence-stories icon

Gift

Take care that you are not deceived.
To gutters petty pleasures drift.
Think not on rights. It’s all a gift.
Forget what you thought you achieved.
Fake gold can only leave you grieved
since none has value in the end.
Note: Falsehood never had a friend.
Beware His wrath. Avoid the curse.
Avoid the path from bad to worse
where spirals flush the flesh they rend.


In Ronovan Hester’s Décima Poetry Challenge we are asked to use the rhyme word “gift” in the B line of a décima having rhyme pattern ABBAACCDDC.

This poem is a meditation on 2 Timothy 3. Although somber, rejoice. If you can see the Gift, stay the course and have a Merry Christmas! And if you don’t, there’s still time.

But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.

2 Timothy 3:13 King James Version
Park by the Water
Ronovan's Decima Poetry Challenge Image
Ronovan’s Decima Poetry Challenge Image

Resolutions

Chel Owens challenges us to write a funny, clean limerick about “resolutions”.

Those demons look deeply demented.
Based on deeds, none of them have repented.
Resolutions to keep
Are not won on the cheap.
With such demons you’ll turn up tormented.

Unfortunately I doubt that limerick’s funny. Here’s another attempt.

How I wish I could make resolutions
That would stick when they’re stuck in solutions
When solutions go weak
Resolutions will streak
At the cost of some nasty pollutio
ns.

And that limerick doesn’t make any sense. Here’s another attempt.

Every plan I attempt goes to pot.
Every dream I cook up has a spot.
Resolutions today
May resolve in some way,
But they’re not, though, the kind that I’ve got.

And so I give up my resolution to write a limerick.


Linked to A Mused Poetry Contest.

Water Right Below

Snappers’ Choice

When Alice saw the rabbit hole,
she wondered: “Do I dare to go?”
She went. Praise God. Raise gratitude.
She found her winding way back home.


Linked to Cosmic Photo Challenge where Dale offers the theme of “snappers’ choice”, or photos of my own choosing. These are pictures taken about a week ago near the beach.

Also linked to Trent P. McDonald’s The Weekly Smile. I was thinking this past week of Matthew 6:13, And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. (NIV)

I smiled when I thought the temptation from the evil one might be for me to get my own way (or its way) when instead I should be rejecting it. When I do get my own way, that is, when my own will was done, I wondered if that were also His will for me? And that made me suspicious of the lyrics in the song, I Did It My Way.

Ahh! Going down that rabbit hole made me smile all the more with gratitude as things started to make sense from that context. Now to find my way back home.

Post and Rope

Crystal Grimes is hosting a Holiday Blogging Party to which I am linking this post. May all of you have a blessed Hanukkah and a merry Christmas.

Knocking

His knuckles tapped the door to knock.
Would no one on the inside hear?
But then came Jane, who wiped a tear,
and Jim, a target safe to mock.
They looked outside, released the lock,
and called the others, “Come and see!”
But none would bother. Faithfully
both Jim and Jane dressed in pure white,
gave thanks like it were Christmas night,
and shared a meal among just three.


Linked to Ronovan Writes Décima Poetry Challenge where the goal is to use the rhyme word “knock” in the A line of a décima having rhyme pattern ABBAACCDDC.

I imagine Jim and Jane as those rare members of the church in Laodicea, as recorded in Revelation 3:20, who were willing to open the door.

Crystal Grimes is hosting a Holiday Blogging Party to which I am linking this post.

Overlooking the Lagoon
Ronovan's Decima Poetry Challenge Image
Ronovan’s Decima Poetry Challenge Image

Firewood

Though night
conceals the day
our winter’s wood is dry.
Take me in I beg of you. Tell me what I need to do.
With joy and thankful cry
we walk the way
with Light.


Linked to Farrago Express where the prompt is to write a saturnica, a poem of 7 lines with rhyme pattern ABCDCBA with syllable counts 2/4/6/14/6/4/2 centered to look like the planet Saturn with its rings.

Also linked to Crystal Grimes’ Holiday Blogging Party.

Stacked Firewood

Stable, Truthful Hope

Although what shines need not be wrong
beware dark lies that shadow truth,
distract the old, confuse the youth
with specious lyrics from a song.

I wonder.  Must I sing along?
Some tunes that once enchanted me
now don't make sense.  Be just and free,
merciful, alive and stable,
driving out false dreams and fable,
preferring joy to pleasantry.

Linked to Ronovan Writes Décima Poetry Challenge where the requirement is to use “stable” as a rhyme word in the D position of a décima have rhyme pattern ABBAACCDDC.

Also linked to Crystal Grimes’ Holiday Blogging Party.

Sand Train Over a Hill on an Ocean’s Beach
Ronovan's Decima Poetry Challenge Image
Ronovan’s Decima Poetry Challenge Image

Art From Nature

Linked to Cosmic Photo Challenge where Dale offers the theme of “art from nature”. The art here is the hook, trellis poles and grape arbor. Nature framed it.

Also linked to Trent P. McDonald’s The Weekly Smile. We moved back to Miami Beach, but could not get our internet re-connected for a couple of days. Everything seemed to go bananas and the excuse was always “covid”. Then the problems vanished after going to the cable provider’s offices personally, covid or no covid. I look at it as divine blessing. I did realize we need to prepare for extended periods without the internet. That realization was the source of my smile this week along with every opportunity to offer gratitude for blessings.

Art From Nature

Tears To Leave Behind

They're growing in a window well
where light is rarely seen.
Live on, persist, be bright and green,
or yellow hued for just a spell.

They offer us some hope and tell
us though pigheaded, willful, blind
there's grace abounding, sure and kind.
With thankful blessings everywhere
repent, reform, reach up and there
we'll leave our every tear behind.

Linked to Ronovan Writes Décima Poetry Challenge where the word “blind” is a rhyme word in the C lines of a décima with rhyme pattern ABBAACCDDC.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Plants in a Basement Window Well
Ronovan's Decima Poetry Challenge Image
Ronovan’s Decima Poetry Challenge Image