2011 in Review

>> Friday, December 30, 2011

Dear friends,
This has been a wonderful year for JournEzine and we want to thank you for your prayer and your participation.
We just closed our 6th Annual Christmas Story Contest with some wonderful entries.  You can view a PDF of the entries HERE.  Thanks and congratulations to all of those who entered.
You might have noticed that JournEzine has a new format this year.  We now publish daily and send updates from our feedburner (sign up on our main page) or Follow us on Twitter.  

JournEzine is rich with diversity with our "Focus on Israel", "World News" and "Going Global" sections in addition to the general publication.  We are pleased to announce and welcome Laury Hubrich to our staff this year.  Laury heads the "Daily Manna" section of JournEzine where a diverse selection of authors contribute to a daily devotion/reflection/teaching.  Please watch our Daily Manna section for Vlogs, video teaching, articles, poetry and more!  We are blessed to be able to welcome Laury as our newest editor.  Feel free to contact her atJournEzine2@yahoo.com.
Please continue to pray for this ministry as we embark upon 2012.  Look for our new section of Testimonies to be launched in January!
Part of our calling at JournEzine is to encourage and edify and also to provide avenue for others to use their God-given gifts.  As always, JournEzine  welcomes your submissions of original work in the form of art, music, video, articles, stories, poetry and more!
JournEzine wishes each of you a blessed 2012!

God bless,

Jeanice McDade
Managing Editor

This has been a portion of my 2011.  A good bit and portion.  I can't wait to see how God uses Journezine in 2012!


And in this Corner...

>> Friday, December 23, 2011

I shared this devotional on JournEzine today and wanted to make sure I put it here on my blog too.  I'm having fun editing the Emagazine but it's lots of work!  Anyway, here is my post:

Every year at this time, Santa Claus enters our vocabulary. We warn our children they better be good for goodness sake! I must admit I used that on my kids to get them to eat their vegetables and clean their rooms for as long as I possibly could. Santa had a good run in our house until they were old enough to realize that he just wasn't real and they were being played by a mama that wanted them to mind, is all. Smart kids.

I wonder why we do this? Do you wonder that too? Do we talk to our children about Jesus as much as we do about Santa Claus? Ouch. I'm sorry if that hurt. I mean, honestly. How many times do we sit around together watching movies about Jesus? Okay. Now how many movies and cartoons about Santa have we watched this season already? And the channels will still have them on after Christmas too and we will watch them. We all seem to be suckers for Santa.

Maybe it's his giving spirit and joy he spreads to everyone in the land? -- Ummm... I thought it was Jesus' birth that heralded in that joy, right?
Luke 2: 10Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people11For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.

The baby didn't come bearing physical presents.  He didn't come with a sword.  He DID come to change the world though, and nothing was ever the same after His birth.  He came to live His life on earth as a common man and experience everything just like us.  He taught His followers about God and how to walk a faith-filled life and when it was time for Him to go back to Heaven, Jesus died for all of our sins.

Phil. 2:8And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.9Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name…

Santa didn't do any of those things.  Even if he were real, why would we spend so much time exalting a fat old man in a red suit?  He's a good guy.  He gives us hope in the human race.  He makes us smile.  He helps us remember to give to others.  I know all that but is it really worth confusing our kids?  I watched one Christmas movie where the kids were praying to Santa.

I talked with an 18 year old who still believes in Santa.  Granted, she's a special needs child but she's a thinker.  She told me, "Yes, I'm a Christian and I believe in God and Jesus.  Of course I believe in Santa!"  You see, I just think somewhere along the way, our kid's theology is getting messed up.  Confused.  It's clear to us.  Santa is fun.  I love Christmas movies as much as anyone, probably more.  I love trying to figure out how in the world Santa could get to all those houses in one evening.  Yes, I admit it.  I still ponder that.  But let's don't confuse our kids for the sake of our childhood memories and traditions.

The line needs to be drawn.   I'm not saying we should outlaw Santa.  I'm not a Grinch, after all.  Let's just be careful to keep things in perspective.  Try to talk about Jesus' birth and the real reason for CHRISTmas much much more than Santa Claus.  That's all I'm saying.

I also wrote about this on the Joe blog.  It was called, Bad Theology.  I hope you will read that also.  I shared a website I found that was most appalling.   

Merry CHRISTmas to you and yours!



Flash Mobs

>> Monday, December 5, 2011

There is something about a flash mob that makes a person smile, you know? Especially at Christmas time. Someone shared this video on FB. I can't imagine being out shopping and then one person starts to sing and then the person beside you begins and soon, the whole place is filled with song. Can you imagine? I would LOVE to be a part of a mob scene like that.

I wonder if that's how it all started in Bethlehem?

The star. Look at that!

The shepherds and wisemen... all lending their voices to worship the newborn King.

The angels singing. Wow! Unbelievable!  The first Christmas flash mob was angelic. Who knew!

Isn't that the way it should be with our faith? One person, let's say you, shares what Christmas really means. Do you realize that many don't know. Honestly. I work with teens that wouldn't have a clue what the true meaning of Christmas is. Think about this: if it were all about Santa Claus, wouldn't it be a big let-down once you were older and found out...you know...that he's not for real? The only reason we celebrate Christmas at all is because Jesus was born. There would be no Christmas without Christ.

Maybe that's why flash mobs are so very cool. People who don't even know the true meaning and Christians alike, all stop. They point. They smile. They tap their feet. They sing along. They hug. In this video, you'll see how the whole atmosphere of the mall changes dramatically because of a shared event with a life-changing message. My life changed when I finally understood the true message of the Christ Child and all that it meant. Love came down from Heaven and nothing was ever the same again!

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