• Which Came First: Paintings of the Nativity or of the Magi?

    There are a couple Rembrandt paintings that made news in 2021.

  • Jesus and Saturnalia

    This time of year the internet is full of memes accusing Jesus and Constantine of hijacking the traditions of Saturnalia, an ancient festival honoring the pagan god Saturn.

    But Christians in northern Africa were celebrating Jesus' birth in December before Constantine was emperor. Perhaps because Jewish tradition stated great prophets were born in December.

  • The Surprising Legacy Hidden in the Christmas Story

    Christmas can be a difficult time if our focus turns to the godless hustle and bustle and we lose the meaning and purpose behind all our activities. Advice is plastered everywhere in November and December on reducing stress, simplifying, streamlining and embracing imperfection. Good advice, considering the first Christmas was anything but 2019 perfect.

  • Was Jesus Born on December 25?

    It is a repeating news story this time of year. Christians are accused of lying about Jesus’ birth. Let it be known the only approved liars at Christmas are those lying about Santa. But it seems that Christians dropped their ideas of a virgin giving birth to a Savior in December to coincide with an innocent Roman festival of lights and presents. First Christians lied; then they stole a holiday. It is a world-wide scandal. The truth about Jesus’ birth exists if anyone cares to hear it, but th…

  • Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

    How do you pack thirty-three years of marriage, five kids (three now with spouses) and ten grandchildren in 900 square feet of space? I am learning. I’ve moved to a small cottage on the water, but sometimes I feel like I left my heart behind in the “little red house” where my husband and I forged a new life together— not his and hers but ours. It is where we raised our children and put down serious roots. I prayed to receive that house, and a verse, that guided me and encouraged me while I wai…

  • When It's Picture Not So Perfect

    The sky is blanketed with murky gray clouds, and there is a bite to the wind. This is not the sixty degree sunny Christmas the weatherman predicted. But this is Michigan. We’re used to the weather having a mind of its own. The Christmas at my house didn’t go as planned, and it wasn’t just the weather. The morning dawned with a phone call from the hospital. My father had arrived there by ambulance and was seriously ill. I left the house and last minute prep for our family Christmas in the hands o…

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