Happy Sunday stampers! Its time for another challenge from Stampin' Sisters in Christ. This week's hostess is Randi, and she selected this verse from Matthew 2:11 "After coming into the house they saw the Child with Mary His mother and they fell to the ground and worshipped Him. Then, opening their treasures, they presented to Him gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh." and a companion set of verses from Matthew 7:7-11 "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you shall find; knock, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. Or what man is there among you who, when his son asks for a loaf, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, he will not give him a snake, will he? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in Heaven give what is good to those who ask it."
The challenge is to make a project or card that includes an image of gifts or giving gifts somewhere in it.
Coincidentally, it also happens to be Lisa's birthday!!! Happy birthday Lisa! For my card then, I chose the only set I own that has birthday gift style images, an old Stampin' Up set called Something to Celebrate. I hope Lisa gets some nice gifts today on her special day.
Our sponsor at Stampin' Sisters in Christ this week is La La Land Crafts, they have some cute images to give away, check out the home page of the blog and take a look.
Another of Lisa's loves, besides paper crafting, is quilting. We consider all of the paper crafters who join us every week in our challenge part of our circle of friends and I searched the web to find a friendship quilt to post in honor of Lisa's birthday.
I found the quilt at the top of the post on a web site called www.scarlettrose.com/heartcircle.html. I believe it was a quilt stitched with blocks exchanged internationally between Japanese and American quilters. Isn't it gorgeous? I think the image might be under copyright, so after today I'm taking it down, but I liked the hearts used to create floral type circles . . . hearts, flowers, friendship, color . . . what can beat that? For the next 'gift' for Lisa on this combination challenge/birthday blog hop, visit Randi's blog here.
As far as the verse selected . . . I can remember as a kid at Christmas being much more excited about the large boxes that sometimes accompanied the gifts than the gift itself. Anyone remember Cuddly Duddly? The large dog? I received one when I was small that came in a cardboard car that was . . .ta dah! Large enough for me or my brother to sit in! We destroyed that car three or four days I believe, pushing each other around the living room. The stuffed dog is also long gone.
While nothing diminishes the pleasurable memories of those gifts, they were not permanent. Well-loved stuffed animals don't have a long lifespan. There is one gift, though, with an eternal promise, the gift of salvation offered through faith in and acceptance of Jesus Christ. The baby in the manger didn't come to this world so we could arrange family gatherings, fill our tables with special meals or give each other gifts, however nice those traditions might be. The entirety of the Old Testament is leading up to that special moment when heaven opened up and God sent down his only son to be our savior.
There is a lovely song by one of my favorite artists, Chris Rice, that blends our world's need for a savior with a welcome to this precious baby in the manger. This Christmas season, or any time of year, welcoming Jesus into your heart is the best gift you can give to yourself.
Here is a link to a site on the Chris Rice web site where you can listen to a clip from this song, Welcome to Our World: