Tis' The Reason For The Season



The Christmas Story - St. Luke 2: 1-14

And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus,   that all the world should be taxed. 

(And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.) 

And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city. 

And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of  Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David) 

To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. 

And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.

And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them at the inn. 

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. 
And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them; and  they were sore afraid. 

And the angel said unto them, Fear not; for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall  be to all people. 

For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. 

And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.


Devotional:    (A Double Portion)

Corinthians 13 -  (Christmas Version) 

If I decorate my house perfectly with plaid bows, strands of twinkling lights and shiny balls, but do not show love to my family, I'm just another decorator.

If I slave away in the kitchen, baking dozens of Christmas cookies, preparing gourmet meals and arranging a beautifully adorned table at mealtime, but do not show love to my family, I'm just another cook.

If I work at the soup kitchen, carol in the nursing home, and give all that I have to charity, but do not show love to my family, it profits me nothing.

If I trim the spruce with shimmering angels and crocheted snowflakes, attend a myriad of holiday parties and sing in the choir's cantata, but do not focus on Christ, I have missed the point.

Love stops the cooking to hug the child.

Love sets aside decorating to kiss the husband.

Love is kind, though harried and tired.

Love doesn't envy another's home that has coordinated Christmas china and table linens.

Love doesn't yell at the kids to get out of the way, but is thankful they are there to be in the way.

Love doesn't give only to those who are able to give in return but rejoices in giving to those who can't.

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Love never fails.

Video games will break, pearl necklaces will be lost, golf clubs will rust.

But giving the gift of love will endure.



A Christmas Prayer by Robert Lewis Stevenson (1850 - 1894)

Loving Father, help us remember the birth of Jesus, that we may share in the song of the angels, the gladness of the shepherds, and the worship of the wise men.  Close the door of hate and open the door of love all over the world. Let kindness come with every gift and good desires with every greeting. Deliver us from evil by the blessing which Christ brings, and teach us to be merry with clear hearts.  May the Christmas morning make us happy to be Thy children, and the Christmas evening bring us to our beds with grateful thoughts, forgiving and forgiven, for Jesus’ sake. Amen.  ~
Robert Louis Stevenson  (1850-1894)

“Behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.” (Luke 2:10-11)

The first Christmas gift was also the best—a Savior. Through Jesus’ birth and death and resurrection, He reconciled God and man. We no longer have to stagger under the burden of guilt and shame. Our hearts can be clear, because Jesus paid the penalty for our sins. We can be forgiven if we repent and believe in Him.

God’s love overcomes hatred and evil, and enables us to love one another. His kindness to us inspires us to be kind to one another. When we are grateful for His forgiveness, we are moved to forgive others. This spirit of love and kindness and forgiveness lasts not only for the Christmas season, but all life long for those who have accepted God’s gift.

This year as you give gifts to others, remember God’s greatest gift of all—Jesus. His love allows us to “share in the song of the angels, the gladness of the shepherds, and the worship of the wise men.”.


Stories to Touch the Heart and Warm the Soul:





Dear Editor,

I am 8 years old. Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus.  Papa says, "If you see it in The Post, it's so."   Please tell me the truth, Is there a Santa Claus?

Virginia O'Hanlon

The answer as published in the New York paper was:


Your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except what they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men's or children's, are little. In this great universe of ours, man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.

Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus! It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginias. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The external light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.

Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies. You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if you did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that's no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.

You tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived could tear apart. Only faith, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, Virginia, in all this world there is nothing else more real and abiding.

No Santa Claus! Thank God! he lives and lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay 10 times 10,000 years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood..


Santa Is Alive & Well - And We Are On His Team

I remember my first Christmas party with Grandma. I was just a kid. I remember tearing across town on my bike to visit her on the day my big sister dropped the bomb: "There is no Santa Claus," she jeered. "Even dummies know that!"

My grandma was not the gushy kind, never had been. I fled to her that day because I knew she would be straight with me. I knew Grandma always told the truth, and I knew that the truth always went down a whole lot easier when swallowed with one of her world-famous cinnamon buns.  Grandma was home, and the buns were still warm. Between bites, I told her everything. She was ready for me. "No Santa Claus!" she snorted. "Ridiculous! Don't believe it. That rumor has been going around for years, and it makes me mad, plain mad. Now, put on your coat, and let's go."

"Go?  Go where, Grandma?" I asked. I hadn't even finished my second cinnamon bun. "Where" turned out to be Kerby's General Store, the one store in town that had a little bit of just about everything.  As we walked through its doors, Grandma handed me ten dollars. That was a bundle in those days.

"Take this money," she said, "and buy something for someone who needs it. I'll wait for you in the car."  Then she turned and walked out of Kerby's.  I was only eight years old.  I'd often gone shopping with my mother, but never had I shopped for anything all by myself.  The store seemed big and crowded, full of people scrambling to finish their Christmas shopping.

For a few moments I just stood there, confused, clutching that ten-dollar bill , wondering what to buy, and who on earth to buy it for.  I thought of everybody I knew: my family, my friends, my neighbors, the kids at school, the people who went to my church.  I was just about through, when I suddenly thought of Bobbie Decker. He was a kid with bad breath and messy hair, and he sat right behind me in Mrs. Pollock's second grade class.   Bobbie Decker didn't have a coat.

I knew that because he never went out for recess during the winter. His mother always wrote a note, telling the teacher that he had a cough, but all we kids knew that Bobbie Decker didn't have a cough, and he didn't have a coat.  I fingered the ten-dollar bill with growing excitement.  I would buy Bobbie Decker a coat.  I settled on a  red corduroy one that had a hood to it.  It looked real warm, and he would like that. "Is this a Christmas present for someone?" the lady behind the counter asked kindly, as I laid my ten dollars down.

"Yes," I eplied shyly. "It's ... for Bobbie."  The nice lady smiled at me.  I didn't get any change, but she put the coat in a bag and wished me a Merry Christmas. That evening, Grandma helped me wrap the coat in Christmas paper and ribbons, and write, "To Bobbie, From Santa Claus" on it -- Grandma said that Santa always insisted on secrecy.  Then she drove me over to Bobbie Decker's house, explaining as we went that I was now and forever officially one of Santa's helpers.  Grandma parked down the street from Bobbie's house, and she and I crept noiselessly and hid in the bushes by his front walk Then Grandma gave me a nudge. "All right, Santa Claus," she whispered, "get going."

I took a deep breath, dashed for his front door, threw the present down on his step, pounded his doorbell and flew back to the safety of the bushes and Grandma. Together we waited breathlessly in the darkness for the front door to open. Finally it did, and there stood Bobbie.

Forty years haven't dimmed the thrill of those moments spent shivering, beside my grandma, in Bobbie Decker's bushes. That night, I realized that those awful rumors about Santa Claus were just what Grandma said they were: ridiculous. Santa was alive and well, and we were on his team.



Christmas Poetry to Ponder:




A Christmas Poem by Joseph P. Martino Copyright© 2003


Two thousand years ago the King of Kings was born.

'The Lamb of God' later made to feel the thorn,

If his words are accepted and not scorned,

They will make us all reborn.


Though God's grace, Joseph and Mary presented

A gift to the world that day, which we can all repay,

By living the ten commandments each and every day.


Try to remember and keep in your heart and mind

Jesus's gospel while here on Earth,

Redemption not a life lived in constant mirth.

Peace on Earth, good will toward man

Everyone should try it, whenever they can.


The Lord gave us the option and choice of 'free will,'

Now it's up to us to fit the bill.


So when you’re Christmas shopping for family and friends,

And money is tight at both ends,

Remember that the greatest gift of all,

Is your love of Jesus in the manger stall.






Lord, this is my prayer

Not only on Christmas Day

But until I see You face to face

May I live my life this way:


Just like the baby Jesus

I ever hope to be,

Resting in Your loving arms

Trusting in Your sovereignty.


And like the growing Christ child

In wisdom daily learning,

May I ever seek to know You

With my mind and spirit yearning.


Like the Son so faithful

Let me follow in Your light,

Meek and bold, humble and strong

Not afraid to face the night.


Nor cowardly to suffer

And stand for truth alone,

Knowing that Your kingdom

Awaits my going home.


Not afraid to sacrifice

Though great may be the cost,

Mindful how You rescued me

From broken-hearted loss.


Like my risen Savior

The babe, the child, the Son,

May my life forever speak

Of who You are and all You've done.


So while this world rejoices

And celebrates Your birth,

I treasure You, the greatest gift

Unequaled in Your worth.


I long to hear the same words

That welcomed home Your Son,

"Come, good and faithful servant,"

Your Master says, "Well done."


And may heaven welcome others

Who will join with me in praise

Because I lived for Jesus Christ

Not only Christmas Day!


as seen at www.WorldofChristmas.net

by Dolores Kozielski 
~As Seen on Cup of Cheer~
Today Lord I have a plan
I will take one person and feed that person
And that person will take another person and feed him
And before you know it no one is hungry
Today Lord I have a plan
I will take one woman and laugh with her
And that woman will take another woman and laugh with her
And before you know it every woman is laughing
Today Lord I have a plan
I will take one child and teach that child loving-kindness
And that child will take another child and teach loving-kindness
And before you know it all children are loving and kind
Today Lord I have a plan
I will take one man and show him mercy
And that man will take another man and show him mercy
And before you know it all men are showing each other mercy
Today Lord I have a plan
I will tell one woman that she is indispensable
And that woman will tell another woman that she is indispensable
And before you know it every woman is indispensable
Today Lord I have a plan
I will nurture one boy and set-aside time for him
And that boy will nurture one girl and set-aside time for her
And before you know it every child is nurturing and caring for each other
Today Lord I have a plan
I will be at peace with all humankind
Even though all humankind is not at peace
And before you know it my thought is the spark of knowing
That peace to all humankind is possible.

~ As Seen on Cup of Cheer ~ Dolores Kozielski is a certified Feng Shui consultant practicing in NJ and PA. She is also trained in Kabbalah, Qigong, Tai Chi, I Ching, Meditational Chinese Brush Stroke and the art of Iconography. Dolores is an artist, professional writer and an award-winning poet, published with major publishing houses including HarperCollins and Scholastic.
For more of Dolores's poetry: Visit her website: http://www.FengShuiWrite.comThis poem Copyright ©2004 - Dolores Kozielski.  Reproduced with permission.


As We Celebrate the Holiday Season, Let Us Not Forget the Reason
 for the Season And The Most Precious Gift of Christmas.




Merry Christmas

and May God Bless Us.... EVERYONE !!!

'Tis The Reason For The Season