Christmas Stars

Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens: 
 who created all these? 
 He who brings out the starry host one by one 
and calls forth each of them by name. 
 (Isaiah 40:26)

When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers,
 the moon and the stars
which you have set in place,
what is mankind that you are mindful of them,
 human beings that you care for them?
 (Psalm 8:3-4)

He determines the number of stars 
and calls them by name 
(Psalm 147:4)

Praise Him sun and moon:
 praise him all you shining stars
 (Psalm 148:3)

A star rises from Jacob, a scepter from Israel. 
(Numbers 25:17)

After Jesus was born in Bethlehem village Judea territory - 
this was during Herod's kingship - 
a band of scholars arrived in Jerusalem from the East. 
They asked around,
 "Where can we find and pay homage 
to the newborn king of the Jews?
  We observed a star in the eastern sky 
that signaled his birth. 
 We're on pilgrimage to worship him."  
(Matthew 2:1)

When they saw the star they were overjoyed 
(Matthew 2:10)

Do everything without grumbling or arguing,
so that you may become blameless and pure,
children of God without fault,
in a warped and crooked generation.
Then you will shine among them,
like stars in the sky.
(Philippians 2:14-15)


Christmas Lights

Have you ever wondered
as you wandered through the aisles
 of all the stores we love to shop ~
the discount stores, the dollar stores, 
the lumber yards, and the drug stores.

Have you ever wondered 
what the Chinese factory workers 
think about all this stuff on our shelves?
 Especially the Christmas Decorations.

 99.9% of the items on those shelves bears a
Made in China sticker.


Bob Fu of CHINAaid,
based in Midland, Texas,
 was imprisoned in China for "illegal evangelism",
 and later fled China because
 his wife had become pregnant
 without proper permission from the government. 

She would have faced forced abortion had she not left. 

Mr. Fu tells a story in his book,
of a woman, newly rescued from China,
 being at his home
during the Christmas season.

He tells of her walking to the Christmas tree

 and touching the lights.


Thinking that she had never seen a Christmas tree 
or the beautiful twinkling lights,
he explained them to her,

 then showed her an unopened box of Christmas lights.

He says, that quick as a flash,
she opened the box, disassembled the string of lights,
 reassembled them, 
and placed them perfectly back in the box.

Her explanation was that she had 
spent four years in a prison
referred to as a

...assembling Christmas Lights.

The horror of it takes my breath away 
and clouds my vision. 




News from the Peaceful Valley

Here in North Dakota, 
the NEWS is the WEATHER and the WEATHER is the NEWS.

Conversations begin with WEATHER:
How do you like this heat? (80)
How do you like this wind?
How do you like this fall?  
Are you ready for winter?
How do you like this winter?

Well, I can't let today pass without reporting the weather.

The temperature is currently
 real feel -38

Streets are snow packed
School goes on
The Christmas choir met for practice at the theater
The Oilfield is in full swing.
And Papa hung Christmas lights on both porches today!

And conversation ends with WEATHER:
Stay warm!

And to my Texas friends in 
Ya'll Stay Warm!

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