The holidays are an exciting, hectic time, so we need to be intentional
about nurturing strong faith. Below is a plan for scripture reading and
other ideas to help you focus on Jesus during the holiday season. 

 Spiritual Focus on Celebrating Jesus
through scripture, prayer, song, and remembrance.


From Thanksgiving to Christmas ... remember Jesus 
->  At Thanksgiving, write down ideas for how to celebrate the Christmas season. Select one idea for each week of December.
->  Reflect on uplifting stories for kids of all ages - Crippled Lamb by Max Lucado, The Grinch by Dr. Seuss, Charlie Brown Christmas, VeggieTales' Toy that Saved Christmas, It's a Wonderful Life.
->  Serve someone in need.
->  Sort through toy boxes & pull out items to give away.
->  Attend a Christmas program in your community.
->  Set aside one night a week as a Sabbath - give yourself a break!
     • Serve special food (hot chocolate, hot apple cider, popcorn, etc.)
     • Enjoy a quiet devotional time.
->  Learn how December holidays are celebrated in other cultures.     
Did you know Jesus celebrated Hanukkah in John 10:22?
->  As you receive Christmas cards, pray for the senders.
->  Set up a nativity scene in your yard and in your home. 
->  Play music that honors Christ.
->  Make a poster with CHRIST written down the left side.  Beside each letter write a word that describes an attribute you could develop.
->  Draw names of a family member to give a priceless "love" gift (coupons for back rubs or time together or babysitting or house cleaning, hand-made items, heirlooms, special photos, etc.)




Christmas Eve and Christmas Day Celebrations ... remember Jesus
Attend the special Christmas Eve worship service at College Hills.
->  Find a way to connect gift-giving to God's gifts.
->  Have fun - games, hidden presents or ornaments.
->  Relax.  Enjoy being with loved ones, even if they are not enjoyable!

After Christmas ... remember Jesus
  Make a journal or scrapbook of Christmas memories.
->  Buy faith-focused decorations for next year.
->  Say thank you - either written or verbal.
->  Make un-decorating an event with family and friends.

->  Re-Commit to the FAITH@HOME initiative pledge for the New Year.  Deut. 6:4-9


Suggested Scripture Readings

Keeping a Spiritual Focus through the Christmas Holidays

Each day as you read the scripture and meditate about how God was working to bless the world in this text.  How might eact text connect to events in you day? 


Week 1 theme:  Prophecy 

Day1      Genesis 3:1-15
Day2      Deuteronomy 18:14-22   
Day3      Isaiah 40:1-11
Day4      Isaiah 52:7-10
Day5      Jeremiah 31:27-36
Day6      Isaiah 11:1-10
Day7      Micah 5:2-4

Week 2 theme:  Preparation

Day1   Malachi 3:1-6
Day2   Malachi 4:1-6
Day3   Luke 1:5-25
Day4   Luke 1:57-66
Day5   Luke 1:67-80
Day6   Mark 1:1-7
Day7   John 1:1-8

Week 3 theme:  Prayer

Day1   John 1:9-18                
Day2   John 1:19-27
Day3   Isaiah 7:10-14
Day4   Luke 1:26-38
Day5   Luke 1:39-56
Day6   Isaiah 9:2-7
Day7   Matthew 1:18-25

Week 4 theme:  Rejoice and follow

Day1   Luke 2:1-20
Day2   Matthew 2:1-23
Day3   Luke 2:21-40
Day4   Luke 4:14-21
Day5   Mark 8:27-38
Day6   John 13:1-17
Day7   Philippians 2:5-11


Christmas day: Read Luke 1-2 and offer a prayer of thanks.

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