And Lo, The Angel of the Lord Came Upon Them…

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. Luke 2:9

Well worth the read… Merry Christmas!

Grandma and Santa Claus

I remember my first Christmas adventure 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. I knew they were world-famous, because Grandma said so. It had to be true.

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 world-famous 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 thought out, when I suddenly thought of Bobby Decker. He was a kid with bad breath and messy hair, and he sat right behind me in Mrs. Pollock’s grade-two class. Bobby Decker didn’t have a coat. I knew that because he never went out to recess during the winter. His mother always wrote a note, telling the teacher that he had a cough, but all we kids knew that Bobby Decker didn’t have a cough; he didn’t have a good coat. I fingered the ten-dollar bill with growing excitement. I would buy Bobby 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, ma’am,” I replied shyly. “It’s for Bobby.”

The nice lady smiled at me, as I told her about how Bobby really needed a good winter coat. I didn’t get any change, but she put the coat in a bag, smiled again, and wished me a Merry Christmas.

That evening, Grandma helped me wrap the coat (a little tag fell out of the coat, and Grandma tucked it in her Bible) in Christmas paper and ribbons and wrote, “To Bobby, From Santa Claus” on it.

Grandma said that Santa always insisted on secrecy. Then she drove me over to Bobby 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 Bobby’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 door 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 Bobby.

Fifty years haven’t dimmed the thrill of those moments spent shivering, beside my Grandma, in Bobby 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.

I still have the Bible, with the coat tag tucked inside: $19.95.

Author unknown

Today’s inspirational story is shared from the following website: http://www.inspire21.com/stories/holidaystories/GrandmaandSantaClaus

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Angels….Are There to Help Us!

Angels play a prominent part in the Lord’s plan in all dispensations. Our own dispensation is no exception. In fact, our dispensation has been a period of extraordinary angelic activity Donald W. ParryI believe in angels – I have to – I have seen them more than once.

The first time came when my husband and I saw our unborn children. The second came when my angel took me back to heaven to witness my meeting with God.

The angels, that I have witnessed, did not have wings but their visits did have purpose and were orchestrated by God.

Knowing what I know, I realize that I see angels on a daily basis. It’s just that all of the angels I see daily have bodies now and are having a mortal experience. The mortal angels I see daily have mostly forgotten where they came from and the purpose for their being here. (If they only knew their true identity!)

I know and I have witnessed, many occasions, events and occurrences in which angels were involved. I know that my deceased father saved my granddaughter when she was caught in a rock slide. I know that angels surrounded her in her hospital room and gave her much needed strength and healing. I know that angels facilitated the miraculous search and adoption of my two children from Russia. I have heard the voices of angels, seen them and felt them. Would you be surprised to know that I believe that manifestations through feelings is most important?

Feeling is believing…after my near-death experience, I have come to recognize how important it is to give feelings credibility. It is even more important to give God credit for the work He does in our lives.

I suspect that once I return to that heavenly realm from whence we all came that I will see that my encounters with heavenly angels were much more frequent than I even knew. I will not be surprised if I find that all of us are helped and assisted by angels in some way on a daily basis.

As a result of my near-death experience and encounters with angels, I have learned to give thanks for my angels and to ask for their assistance. I know that they are a great blessing in my life. I hope you will join me in giving thanks to God for the angels who assist us!

I hope you enjoy today’s story!

Paris

This story takes places on February 3, 2001. My best friend is a flight attendant for a Canadian Airline and she took me to Paris with her for my 40th birthday as my present. It was a whirlwind trip but very special and very memorable for many reasons but specifically this one. We had walked from our hotel over the bridge of the Thames River to the old side of Paris. We stopped at the flame of Princess Diana and shed a few tears looking at all the letters, candles, etc. that were there for her. We went to a restaurant and had dinner. When we went to go home we couldn’t decide whether to walk or take a taxi. It was drizzling some but we decided to walk anyway.

When we got back to the site of Diana’s flame, we got into a very deep discussion about death and why good people get taken away at such a young age. My sister-in-law had died in her early 40’s of leukemia a few years prior. I am a Christian and my best friend was just starting to believe so it was a very interesting conversation. In front of her flame, we crossed the street and were walking along the sidewalk very close beside the Thames River which was flowing very fast and high because of the rain and time of year. My friend had warned me earlier in the day to hold onto my purse because there were a lot of muggings in Paris. I had never been mugged before even though I had lived in places like Mexico City, Acapulco and downtown Toronto so I honestly didn’t think much of it.

Well, as we were walking along in this deep spiritual conversation, someone ran up to me and pushed me really hard towards the river and tried to grab my purse. It was like out of a movie or something. I felt like I was standing back while it was happening kind of in slow motion. I screamed very loud and so did my friend, I held onto my purse for dear life and all of a sudden, out of what seemed like nowhere, a very tall (over 6’5″ tall) very handsome man came along, enveloped both my friend and I in his arms and asked us if we were okay. We screamed at him too unfortunately just because we were so distraught and afraid and when the mugger ran in the opposite direction after turning back and looking at us, we turned around to thank the man and he was gone – just like that.

It was all open so we couldn’t figure out where he went so quickly. We both looked at each other after, both of us shaking like leafs and we both said at the same time, “Was that an angel that helped us?”. And if so, we hadn’t been very kind to him. I guess he understood our fright. Both of us maintain, to this day, the mugger looked back and saw the man with us and ran away because of him. Once his job was done, the man was gone. I still believe he was an angel and I’m very thankful. I could very easily have been pushed into the river and swept away. Merci to whoever it was . . . 🙂

Story shared from the following website: http://www.angels-online.com/

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