Ultimate Christmas Countdown – Friday, December 16, 2016

9 Days Until Christmas!

Polar ExpressSong: “It Came Upon a Midnight Clear,” by Kutless
Christmas Album: “Christmas: The Gift,” by Colin Raye
Christmas DVD: “The Polar Express”
Netflix Movie: “Mickey’s Magical Christmas: Snowed in at the House of Mouse”
Amazon Prime Movie: “Midnight Clear”
Feeln Movie: “Pictures of Hollis Woods”
On TV:
• “Jingle All the Way,” 5:30 p.m., FreeForm
• “The Nine Lives of Christmas,” 6 p.m., Hallmark
• “Holly’s Holiday,” 6 p.m, Lifetime
• “Santa Hunters,” 7 p.m., NatGeo
• “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation,” 7:35 p.m., FreeForm
• “It’s a Wonderful Life,” 8 p.m., USA
• “The 85th Annual Hollywood Christmas Parade,” 8 p.m.,” CW
• “Good Luck Charlie: It’s Christmas!” 8 p.m., Disney
• “The Mistletoe Promise,” 8 p.m., Hallmark
• “Deck the Halls,” 8 p.m. and 10 p.m., USA
• “The Polar Express,” 9:45 p.m., FreeForm
• “Ice Sculpture Christmas,” 10 p.m., Hallmark
• “Christmas on the Bayou,” 10:02 p.m., Lifetime
Recipe: Meemaw’s Kitchen Sink Christmas Cookies

Quick Thought for Christmas 

Read

Matthew 1:18-24

And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly.
Matthew 1:19

Reflect

So much attention is focused on Mary at this time of year, and that’s only natural. After all, she was specially chosen by God to give birth to His only Son. But so little attention is actually focused on Joseph – and that’s also fairly natural. Since God was the actual Father of Jesus, Joseph is kind of the “odd man out.” Jesus wasn’t really his child, but without Joseph, this story of Christmas couldn’t be complete.

I’ve said on previous days that Mary’s life was at stake because of her premarital pregnancy. Under strict Jewish law, sex outside of marriage was often punished by stoning the guilty party to death. But even before he had an angel-influenced dream, Joseph protected Mary by seeking to quietly deal with her situation. He had every right to demand her death, but he showed godly character instead.

The amazing thing is that God was providing for what Jesus needed even before He was born. He knew that Joseph was a good man who would protect Mary so that Jesus could be born. He also knew that Joseph would be a good earthly father for Jesus, someone who could model manhood, teach him the important qualities in life and also provide a solid, stable home for his family.

The Lord provides for each of us the things we need, even if we don’t realize we’re going to need them. If you look around yourself, you’ll see the evidence of this – things that you have that you didn’t even really have to think about, right down to the air that you breath.

In nine days, you’ll open presents, some of which may be things that you asked for. But before you get to the Christmas tree, start thanking God for providing the little things that you didn’t ask for. Put your heart in a spirit of thanksgiving, so that no matter what you receive on Christmas, you can be truly grateful for what you unwrap.

Reflection  copyright © 2016 by Doug DeBolt.

Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

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About Doug DeBolt

Capnpen is a writer who was a newspaper and magazine journalist in a previous life. A college journalism major, he now works as an administrator, but gets his writing fix by blogging about a variety of topics, including politics, religion, movies and television. When he's not working or blogging, Capnpen spends time with his family, plays a little golf (badly) and loves to learn about virtually anything.
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