Merry Christmas, dear Reader! May your day be filled with Love and Joy as you and your loved ones celebrate the reason for Life itself: The Birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ! Born to Die that we Might live…what a wonderful thought! In the words of Isaiah 9:6-7:
For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.
Merry Christmas from Life of Heritage!
Hello and Merry Christmas Eve Eve! Today I have another Devotion for you, specifically for young ladies! I hope you enjoy!
And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.
King James Bible
What if God had chosen the year 2019 to send His Son to earth? Would God have chosen you to be the Mother of His Child? Would you have been what He needed to raise His Only Begotten Son? What are some qualities you think God wanted when He chose Mary?
Maybe He wanted her to be a loving daughter to her parents.
A loving sister.
A faithful wife.
A woman pure in heart as well as in body.
A woman ready to submit to Him as well as to her husband.
A woman of understanding, who loved God and tried to follow His laws.
A woman who took the traditions and sacrifices set forth by God Seriously.
A woman who would be ready to go anywhere God called her to go.
A woman with respect for authority.
These are all traits that would be desirable. Take a moment and ask your self: would I be what God wanted? Would He choose me? If not, why not? What are some things you can do to become a woman God would have chosen?
Obviously, no one is perfect, Mary included. But just because we are born with a sin nature is no reason not to strive and be our best for God. That’s no excuse to live in sin. We are not saved to keep sinning, just with the knowledge that our sin isn’t sending us to hell. We are, in God’s strength, to endeavor to overcome temptation. To strive daily for the mastery of our besetting sins. Then reach out for the high calling God has placed on our lives. As it so often has been said, “Salvation doesn’t make you sinless, but it sure ought to make you sin less!’
As we enter the new year right around the corner, purpose in your heart that in God’s strength, you will endeavor to be a woman of whom God could say, “Blessed art thou among women.”
Don't forget to swing by Faith's Blog for More Christmas Fun!
It’s time for another Christmas post! Well, not exactly a Christmas post…its time for me to post another history post. And in keeping with my series, I found a battle close to Christmas. And it really makes me think of Christmas time. Plus, I have a few excerpts from my book, Our Heritage to Save! One from Fredericksburg and one from a Christmas scene! So keep reading to find those!
Smack Dab in the Middle of Things. Fredericksburg was located right in the middle of Washington D.C. and Richmond, the capital cities of the warring countries. This alone made it an iconic town that both parties would want control of. The Battle of Fredericksburg would determine who would have it.
We Will All Cross Together. General Winfield Scott Hancock saw the chance of a battle before it happened. He wanted to take part of the army across to secure the town before Lee and Jackson arrived. Gen. A. Burnside, the General of the Army of the Potomac, disagreed and insisted that they all cross over together. His insistence proved fatal for the Union Army.
A Chicken Couldn’t Live on That Field. Alexander Porter, Lee’s artillery expert, told this to Lee prior to the battle. He had his cannons set up just right, there was a stonewall for the Southern troops to fight behind and the Federals would have to cross open ground to get to the wall. No sir, a chicken couldn’t live on that field once the shots were fired.
Fredericksburg! Fredericksburg! Fredericksburg! This was the cry of the Union soldiers as they taunted the Confederates retreating from Pickett’s Charge at Gettysburg. But why did they remind their counterparts of a battle the federals had so miserably lost? Well, perhaps they were trying to tell the Confederates that they should have learned from the federals’ mistake at Fredericksburg. They charged at the Confederates across an open field not once, not twice, but thirteen times. Thankfully, the South did learn something from their mistakes…they only charged the federals once.
It is Well. It was following this battle that General Lee said, “It is well that war is so terrible, or we should grow too fond of it.” It’s easy to see his meaning. Campaign strategy can be fun, planning the battle movements and counterattacks. The horror of it comes when you remember, this isn’t a game. This is an event that will leave men dead.
Faugh A Ballagh!* At this battle, one of the famous clashes happened when the Southern Irish of Georgia clashed with the Northern Irish Brigade of New York met at the stonewall outside of Fredericksburg. The two knew they were more than likely firing on their family as the shots were exchanged. The conflict ended in a federal retreat. Instead of continuing to fire at the retreating enemy, the Southern Irish cheered their comrades, hardly a dry eye among them. *An Irish War Cry “Clear the Way!”
Counting the Casualties. The Federal forces suffered a staggering 12,653 casualties, broken down into 1,284 killed, 9,600 wounded, and 1,769 captured or missing. The Confederacy suffered 5,377 losses: 608 killed, 4,116 wounded, 653 captured or missing. Sadly, before the war was over, these numbers would seem like nothing.
Answering the Cry. Sgt. Richard Kirkland, Confederate Army, couldn’t bear to listen to the cries of the dying federal and Confederate soldiers on the field, so after pestering his officers, he was allowed to carry water to them, to ease there suffering. He has been dubbed the “Angel of Marye’s Heights” and is much loved by both the North and the South.
The Color of the Coat Doesn’t Matter. Clara Barton had set up a hospital in the nearby Lacy House. When she heard someone say a Confederate soldier should be taken out of the house, she refused to listen to another word of it. A patient was a patient, no matter his coat color.
Looted and Burned. Most of the Homes in Fredericksburg were spoiled by the federal troops during their short stay in town. Many homes were damaged by cannon shot and fire, while others were looted for anything of value by drunken bluecoats. Appalled, some federal officers tried to rein in their men, but it took some doing to restore order. This is what the townspeople and Confederate Army had to return to; rebuilding and restoration.
And now for some snippets!
From Our Heritage to Save-- Chapter 30: War is So Terrible
Stonewall Jackson and the Confederate right flank were viciously attacked by the Union troops. Stonewall’s men waited until the Federals were almost on top of them to start firing.
Richard, commanding his unit, fired along with the others. He watched as the guns were fired and tried to push away the reality that men and boys, wearing blue and gray, were dying all around him. Souls forever gone to eternity.
He glanced to his right and saw David Bowers acting as a field doctor, patching the men up and sending them back into the fight. Titus Mallory stood nearby, loading his gun once more and preparing to fire. How odd it was that Titus, who had taught Richard so much, was now a sergeant under Richard’s command!
The men in blue soon fell back to regroup. When they did, they pressed hard to break the line. A hail of bullets showered the area. When Richard realized that the Yanks had managed to divide two Confederate brigades in half, he raised his gun and began fighting harder than he had realized was possible. “Come on, Boys! Remember your families,” he shouted. Then their camp verses came to mind. “32:7-8!” he shouted.
The cry was taken up by the others. “32:7-8!”
“More with us than with them!”
“…With us is the LORD our God to help us, and to fight our battles!”
“Be strong and courageous!” The Confederates soon filled the gap again and drove the soldiers back.
Richard looked up and saw a soldier trying to drag David off the field. A mini battle erupted as members of the 32:7 Company rushed to defend their doctor friend. It wasn’t easy going, for the Federal had friends as well. But they managed to escape without major injuries, just a few cuts and bruises.
Richard’s adrenaline was up. Those invaders had tried to take one of his men; they had already taken *removed, because Spoilers XD* and he was determined they weren’t going to take anyone else. Woe unto those who dared mess with the 32:7 Company!
From Chapter 32: Christmas Surprises
Philip, Drew and Charles stood in the hall, waiting to surprise their families. “Philip, you go into the parlor first, and see how long it takes for them to notice you’re there,” Drew whispered. Philip grinned and stepped into the room, leaning against the door frame.
It didn’t take long. Michael, looking rather glum, was listlessly glancing around the room. He gave a start when he saw Philip. Then realizing who it was, he jumped to his feet. Those nearest him saw the action and turned to see what he was looking at.
Jennifer gave a cry of delight and hurried forward to hug her big brother. He hugged her tight, lifting her off her feet. She soon had to make way for her sister-in-law though. The whole family was eager to greet their loved one and Philip loved the attention.
“Boy, why didn’t you tell us you were coming home for Christmas?” Robert Rains asked his son. “We had no idea!”
Philip relished hearing his father’s voice again. “Wasn’t time to tell you! I only found out a few days ago! I came as soon as I could.”
“Oh, Charles!” his mother called out at that moment as the next soldier entered the room. She soon had her oldest son in her embrace. “My boy, oh!” More hugs, kisses and greetings ensued.
“What happened to your hand?” Nana asked in alarm.
Charlie grinned, “Just a sprain, Nana, and nearly healed.”
Dixie watched the reunions with a pain in her heart. She wanted to see Richard and Seth so bad. And they still hadn’t heard the outcome of Fredericksburg. Were they sitting behind bars at this very minute while everyone was making over Philip and Charles like they were heroes?
Tears welled in her eyes. She briskly, but inconspicuously made her way to the hall. She didn’t want to ruin the occasion with her self-pity and anxiety.
Once in the hall, with the door shut, Dixie allowed the tears to flow. Her shoulders shook, and her breath came in quiet, sobbing gasps.
She jumped as a hand touched her shoulder. She swiped at her eyes and turned around. Drew. She gave way to her tears once more. He stooped down and pulled his cousin into a gentle embrace, allowing her to cry on his shoulder.
He patted her and said, “It’s alright, Dixie. You’ll see them again soon. This war will end before long. Maybe you’ll feel better when I tell you that we lost Fredericksburg. Richard and Seth are probably in the town right now, helping clean up the mess.”
She nodded. It did help. Her brothers probably were safe. That thought helped a lot. She pulled back after a moment and wiped at her eyes again. Drew handed her a kerchief. “I left mine in the parlor,” Dixie said as she dried her eyes.
Drew smiled. “That’s alright. I would be honored if you’d help me make my grand entrance,” he said, offering his arm.
Dixie tried to muster a smile and said, “If you don’t mind, I’d rather not. I’d feel like...like a traitor to Richard and Seth.”
Drew nodded. “I understand.” He opened the door and then stepped into the realm of excitement. Drew was swamped by his six younger siblings. He nearly disappeared from sight as they all tried to hug him at once, regardless of age.
Dixie slipped back in, at last able to watch the reunions without tears threatening her. But even though Drew’s words had comforted her, she wondered if anyone else were remembering her brothers were in this war too. Were they missed by the cousins?
Constance Angelica gave Dixie a vindictive look. She certainly wasn’t missing Richard and Seth. Jennifer slipped up next to Dixie. “It would be perfect if the boys were here. That and getting the news that the war was over. A perfect Christmas gift!”
Dixie smiled. “Yes. A perfect Christmas gift indeed!”
That's it for now!
I don’t often recommend movies, but during Christmas, who doesn’t like a good Christmas movie with the family? Here are a few of our favorites!
A Charlie Brown Christmas
Who doesn’t love the original Charlie Brown movie? I grew up watching it and every year, we never fail to watch it as a family. It’s a good reminder of the true meaning of Christmas and a chance to escape the commercialism of the media. And of course the movie features the good old King James Bible! You can’t beat that!
This is a new one for our family! We just watched it this month and we fell in love! With a back drop of an orphanage in 1917, this is a story about forgiveness, broken dreams, friendship and love. And I’m not talking romantic love either! This move was very clean, no qualms on showing it to all ages and perfect for a family movie night. Come prepared to laugh, cry and be moved through the story of Rose and Iron Gates. You’ll never forget it!
Seasons of the Heart
This movie isn’t all about Christmas, but the movie wraps up at Christmas and it plays a crucial part. We’ve had this movie for over 15 years, and we love it so much. It’s got it’s funny parts, but the movie is more of the touching kind and asks the question, “What season is your heart in?” Could you love another mother’s child when God chose to take your own? Watch this movie. It’s a powerful, touching film.
Silent Night (2002 Hallmark History film)
If you love history and have means to do a little editing, this movie is great! It’s based on a true story, set during the winter of 1944 in Nazi German. Like I said, it needs editing. There are a few words I had to cut and a few scenes that needed editing for content (Santa, a brief mention of alcohol, etc.) and age sensitivity (realities of post-war PTSD). I recommend an adult watch it first, edit the content (you can write down times when things need to be muted/skipped or get a free editing program like Freemake Video converter *this is not sponsored; I just like this program. I did purchase a license from them at a discount, and I recommend it. Just the basic package. It gets rid of branding, etc.*) But seriously, who wouldn’t like a story of American GI’s and German foot soldiers getting stranded in a cabin for Christmas together? It’s very interesting and inspired my short story from last year (click here for the first part!)
Don't forget to check out Faith's post of the day!
That’s all for now! Have a Blessed Day and Merry Christmas!
So today is the official first day of the 12 Days of Christmas! Last year, I posted everyday…that is not happening this year 😉 But I do have some fun posts planned to share with you over the next few days. And I will link a few posts from last year as well!
Today, I have a few new Christmas books to share with you! So let’s hop right in!
The Quiet Little Woman and other stories by Louisa May Alcott
Never thought I would be recommending one of her books, but here I am! Granted, I’ve only read this one and Hospital Sketches (it was pretty good, but there were a few parts that made me want to shake her!) but I’ve heard some things that have made me leery of her writing. This book was great! So sweet and perfect for a winter evening!
A Providence Christmas by Rebekah A. Morris
This book was so sweet! I enjoyed the setting and the sweet story of a girl without a home. It was old-fashioned, and a sweet Gospel presentation. And it’s even better if you have some colonial style music to listen to in the background! (Disclosure: I received a copy of this book as a beta-reader from the author. I was not required to review the book or to give a positive review.)
A Police Force for Christmas by Rebekah A. Morris
Another new Christmas short story from Miss Morris! This one was so sweet! I love Police officers and this book didn’t disappoint. While Christmas isn’t about the presents, it’s so sweet to see others reach out to those who don’t have what others have…or have been struck by a random act of meanness. Also a good lesson in paying it forward to our friends walking the Thin Blue Line!
In the Heart of the Christmas Pines by Leona Dalrymple
Now to me, this seemed more like an old-fashioned winter story, since there wasn’t just a whole lot mentioned about Christmas, other than the giving of gifts to the poor and someone dressing in a red suit in one scene towards the end (I do not condone this!), but it was a sweet story about how a widow woman, a young heiress, a soldier and a hermit boy find out what really matters: People, not things. Relationships, not prejudice. Very sweet, innocent and old (1914!).
Christmas Quilts by Rebekah A. Morris
Okay, I’ve read a lot of her books 😉 Anyway, this one was super sweet! I love the story line, the sibling banter and the story of the quilts in general. Be sure and check this one out!
Don't forget to Check out Faith's Post and more Christmas fun here!
Christian. American. Southern. Author.