Deck Your Hearts with Boughs of Holly – Verse 3

Posted by on Dec 22, 2014 | 3 comments

Deck Your Hearts with Boughs of Holly – Verse 3

Decorating our homes and hanging those boughs of holly can cause the true message of Christmas to get lost in the rush.


2MefromHim Devotionals

“…because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because He will save His people from their sins.” Matthew 1:20b, 21

There are so many things left to do and so little time. Shopping, baking, presents to wrap, perfect outfits for all the parties, and the menu for Christmas Day. There just isn’t time to get everything done. “Fast away the old year passes” isn’t just a line in a song; it’s what we’re faced with each day as we set our priorities. Hanging those boughs of holly can cause the true message of Christmas to get lost in the rush.

I make the commitment every year to be more organized, to begin earlier, not to wait until the last moment to get important things done so that I can relax and enjoy the season with my family. I still can’t say I’ve accomplished that. Most years we have my husband’s family over on Christmas Eve and my own on Christmas Day. That’s almost 40 people through the house, eating, opening gifts, and enjoying time together in two days, plus all of the preparation and cleaning up. Though I love doing it, I’m not always singing “fa la la la la.”

One thing which helps me keep my perspective as I iron tablecloths and plan how everything will work is making certain I begin and end each day with God’s word. Throughout the Christmas season I read not only the story of Christ’s birth from Matthew and Luke, but also many of the prophecies from the Old Testament foretelling His coming.Deck Your Hearts with Boughs of Holly - Verse 3 2

I want to end the old year doing the right thing, making Jesus my priority. As I realize the time to “hail the new” is rapidly approaching, I also want to make certain I begin with the right thing. It’s great to “sing we joyous, all together…heedless of the wind and weather,” but it’s also important to do what God wants me to straight through without losing stride.

We make a nativity scene the center of our decorations and Santa a passing notion. I made the commitment a long time ago that no Christmas card would leave our home without some aspect of the gospel of Jesus going with it, and no one would leave our house without knowing we make Jesus the center of our celebration.

The message of Christmas is that the baby born in Bethlehem would “save His people from their sins.” Each year, as I decorate the tree and write my Christmas letter, I consider how I can take that message to everyone I come into contact with during the Christmas season.

© Copyright, Norma Gail Thurston Holtman, November 18, 2011& September 16, 2014

About the author:

Norma Gail headshot rockhouse GoogleNorma Gail’s debut contemporary Christian romance, Land of My Dreams, set in Scotland and New Mexico released in April 2014. She is a former Bible Study Fellowship discussion leader who established the first weekly women’s Bible studies in her church in 2003 and continues to lead a weekly small group. Her devotionals, poetry have appeared at, the Stitches Thru Time blog, and in “The Secret Place.” She has led weekly women’s Bible studies for 19 years. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, FaithWriters, and the New Mexico Christian Novelists. She is a former RN and homeschool/soccer mom who loves family research, history, and Scotland. Norma lives in the mountains of New Mexico with her husband of 38 years. They have two adult children.

Connect with Norma: of My Dreams cover sm

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  1. I love this Norma. I share the same sentiments. When the kids were small Santa came to our house, but he came to bring presents for Jesus’ birthday party. Every Christmas Eve we made a birthday cake for Jesus, complete with candles. On Christmas morning, the first thing we did was light the candles and sing happy birthday to Jesus. I love remembering all of this. We serve an amazing Savior 🙂

  2. I have really enjoyed how you have woven the carols throughout these devotionals. Our family tradition growing up was to read the Christmas story and praying before opening presents. I’ve made my own traditions as I’ve gotten older which includes reading my Bible and praying sitting in front of the tree each day. I don’t know why this is so special to me but it is and my devotion time seems richer somehow. Thank you for blessing us with these delightful devotions and giving us the gift of your words from God. Love you. Merry Christmas!

    • Thanks for the encouragement, Marcie!

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