We would like to wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas! If you’ve been following My Sweet Mission for a while then you know that I was raised in a Christian home, and at a young age, I decided to ask Jesus into my heart. John found an email recently called “Grandma’s Christmas Eve Thoughts”, which was written 9 years before my Mom would pass away. I’d like to share her thoughts with you from a Christian Grandma’s point of view, and hope her message touches your heart as much as it touched ours.
Grandma’s Christmas Eve Thoughts
Over the years Christmas Eve has always been my favorite night of the whole year. It is, after all, only one evening, but it never ceases to warm my heart with anticipation as the evening draws near!
Many years ago, it was just Dad and I and our 5 kids (my Mom was pregnant with me in this picture). Then for a few years, we enjoyed Christmas Eve with Uncle Dan and Aunt Donna’s family. We ate, exchanged gifts, and read the Christmas story. It was something we looked forward to each year.
After that, we had Aunt Vi and Uncle Jim’s family over every Christmas Eve for years. The same wonder of Christmas Eve was always there.
Our Christmas Eve tradition continued with our family, but by now we had 2 married children and our first grandchild (Kori.) The thrill of my heart was that they all came home on Christmas Eve and spent the night with us, so we had Christmas Eve AND Christmas morning together, what wonderful years! So much fun and love! (The fish-tank story came out of those years together.) David’s family joined us on Christmas Eve for many years. More marriages, more grandchildren, more fun, more laughter, more good food, and the wonder of Christmas Eve continued!
We moved to a new area and had 18 wonderful Christmas Eves. The “Z” Family joined us for 13 of those years, (I still think about them and miss them every Christmas.) Now, there are lots more grandchildren! These years were the absolute best! Little ones everywhere!
We had a Birthday Party for Jesus! Before they could open their presents, we would have food, the Christmas Story, special poems, and songs, and carols. I think back now and those little ones were amazing, they waited so patiently while we did everything that Grandma felt was important, (and still do) before they could open presents. We started at the youngest, and went to the oldest, as they finally got to open their presents.
I had a tradition that I started with my first grandchildren, I would buy them a Christmas outfit. Fluffy dresses for the girls, and dressy pants and sweaters for the boys. I would shop and shop for all those outfits. Until one Christmas when Andy was about 5, he set me straight, and from then on, it was toys for them all! For a few years, Santa came and brought the children their presents. But it didn’t take Andy and Chelsea long to figure out it was their older cousin Skip, not really Santa. Good food, lots of presents, laughter and fun, fun, fun! The wonder of Christmas Eve was constant, to say the least! The little ones started singing for us Sunday School songs, and their favorite Christmas songs. Like, Andy and “Rudolph” (you would even say it blows) and Jesse with “Awase in a Manger”. They were all so adorable! And Christmas Eve never ceased to be my favorite night of the year! Oh, I almost forgot, there was the Christmas Play, produced and directed by Jamie and Lindsay, starring all of the little grandchildren. Absolutely fantastic! I always kept dress-up clothes for the kids to play with when they came over, so they found costumes for all. What a memory!
All of a sudden one year, it seemed that instead of us entertaining the young ones, they were entertaining us! It was Jared on the piano, with the “First Noel” and all the cousins singing around him. (Andy says, they would practice over the phone for Christmas Eve). There was Kori, with “The 12 Days After Christmas” Funny! It seemed that all of them had something to add. There were poems, and songs, and skits. And the adults had to get in a song or two also. Oh, such wonderful memories!
It seems like just a short time after that, that the young people were coming on Christmas Eve, and instead of eating with us, all they could think of was setting up the basement for a worship service. They brought guitars, a keyboard, drum set, amps, everything they needed, and they spent so much time setting it up and practicing until everything was just perfect. Then they would come up and call us all down, and they would lead us into worship, the best worship that this Grandma can ever recall! My heart would swell with pride as I watched God working in the lives of my grandchildren. He has given us such an amazing family! Talk about the wonder of Christmas Eve!!!
Now, they are all so grown up! 6 of the Grandchildren are married, following the traditions of their new-found families. Dave and Sandy’s family and church demands made it necessary for them to stay in Ohio for Christmas Eve, Dan and Judy moved to Florida, along with Kori and Michael and their family, and a few years ago Char and Brian decided that it was too far to come for one evening, and so they began their own tradition. But our tradition of Christmas Eve continues!
Chase brought new life to our family 8 years ago, and we have all enjoyed his excitement for Christmas! We found out how wonderful Great-Grandchildren can be, even though they are not all able to be here every year.
Then the triplets were born, and this is the 3rd year we have had them with us for Christmas Eve, to our joy they live close enough to be with us each year. So we have little ones again, and how they thrill us with the wonder of Christmas in their faces! They are almost 3 this year, and so much fun!
Over the years many things have changed. We have changed locations several times, some people have come and gone, some of them have been here every year and will be here again this year. I thank God for all of you! You have all touched my life in so many ways, I could never begin to tell you, or to thank you!
But for me, Christmas has never lost its magic and wonder! It is still the most special night of the year! Oh, Grandpa and I are older now, and it is not as easy to do all the things we do. The family helps more now. Change has never really bothered me. Of course, I miss everyone that can’t be here each year, but I look back on all of the Christmas Eve’s past with only the fondest of memories.
As I reflected on all of this today, I realized why all of these changes have never bothered me. The real wonder of Christmas is not about the arrival of Santa, it is not about who is here, or who is not here, it is not the kind of food we eat. It is not who is doing the entertaining, whether the children are young or older. What kind of Birthday Cake we have, what presents we get. It is all about someone who never changes! It is Christ who comes and blankets our hearts with the wonder of Christmas! It is Christ who entertains us with His Presence. The presents are great, and I love giving and receiving them, but just in a short time, we won’t even remember what they were.
This is the real wonder of Christmas!!! It is the birth of a baby in a feeding trough, it is the announcement to the Shepherds, “A Savior is Born” it is the Star in the East, it is all the things that Mary pondered in her heart. It is the celebration of Our Redeemer’s Birth that warms our hearts each Christmas Eve!! THIS is what lays the foundation for every special Christmas Eve, for every decoration we hang on our trees, and every memory we hang on our hearts! This is why Christmas Eve is so special to me and to all of you! This is why this is my favorite evening of the year! And these are all things that will never change!
Only He knows how many more Christmas Eve’s we will celebrate together, (I hope there are many more) but one thing I know…Each one will be special for me, and an evening that I will look forward to with wonder and awe!
Luke 2:10 And the angel said unto them; Fear not, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which shall be to all people!
The good tiding is this:
Jesus Christ came to earth, lived a perfect life, gave up His life by being sacrificed on a cross, was buried in a borrowed tomb, and was raised from the dead 3 days later. Because He took our punishment for sin on Himself, He can forgive our sins and make us children of God if we put our faith and trust in Him! This is the story that never changes, the one that makes Christmas Eve special every year no matter what else changes.
I am so glad that our family heard this blessed message and accepted it, and celebrates it together each year. It is the reason our Christmas Eve, even though changing, has never lost its wonder!
If you have not accepted this message and received the Christ of Christmas into your heart, you can do it now, He is waiting!
Someone once said, “ There has been only one Christmas, the rest are anniversaries.
Our Mom passed away on December 21, 2016, and we love and miss her so very much. But, it is such a comfort to know she is in heaven with Jesus, whom she loved deeply, and that we will see her again one day.
We hope you enjoyed my Mom’s writing “Grandma’s Christmas Eve Thoughts” and it touched your heart today. If you did, please feel free to leave a comment and let us know, we’d love to hear from you. Or, perhaps share this post with a friend.
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