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    Advent of the Redeemer – Part 4

    For Unto us is Born this Day in the City of David But as for you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, Too little to be among the clans of Judah, From you One will go forth for Me to be ruler in Israel. His goings forth are from long ago, From the days of eternity. Micah 5:2 The Christmas frenzy has come and gone and our Advent reflection has drawn to a close. This past Sunday across the world, Christians of all denominations remembered Mary and Joseph’s journey to the tiny city of Bethlehem. It was in that village, within walking distance of the City of Peace, that our Prince of Peace was…

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    Advent of the Redeemer – Part 3

    “My God, my God, why have You forsaken me?” Maybe these words evoke images of Easter week more than Christmas, Good Friday more than the Advent season. We are now in our third week of looking at the Advent through the eyes of the Old Testament saints. In some denominations this past Sunday would have been celebrated as Gaudette Sunday, a celebration of joy. What does Christ’s soul-wrenching cry from the cross have to do with a Sunday that focuses on joy? Hebrews 12:2 says, “…for the joy set before Him [Jesus] endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of…

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    Advent of the Redeemer – Part 2

    During the four weeks of Advent, I want to explore four pictures of Jesus in the Old Testament. As I shared last week, my pastor (Nathan Franckhauser) teaches that, “Old Testament believers looked to a Messiah, the Seed of Abraham, who was coming. We look to a Messiah who died on a cross and was risen three days later and will return.” Having looked at Jesus as Creator and how He modeled redemption through creation, now I want to look at the Akedah. Arguably the most important scene in the Old Testament. The binding of Isaac. The moment where love drove Abraham to sacrifice his only son. My oldest son…

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    Advent of the Redeemer – Part 1

    December second marked the beginning of this year’s advent season. Different denominations have different ways to celebrate just as different families have different ways to celebrate. As a child in the Methodist church, I looked forward to the lighting of the advent candle inside the advent wreath. One candle was lit each week leading up to Christmas while we remembered the hope, love, joy, and peace that Jesus brings us. On Christmas Eve, the last and largest candle was lit to symbolize Jesus as the Light of the World. (The Advent wreath began in the time of the Protestant reformer Martin Luther.) Though I enjoyed the stories and sense of…

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    Gorgeous Faux Wood Beam

    Beams add so much character. And for a small-dollar project, they are a huge payoff. When I first walked into a model home to view the floorplan we were building, I cringed to see a dry-walled support beam splitting the dining room and living room. It was only a momentary case of the shudders though. Our home backs up to a beautiful 4.5 acres of wooded hills. And what is a home in the woods without a bit of natural architecture inside? So I started planning a faux beam. Because beams are expensive! Even the faux beams (made of styrofoam) would run over $400 to do that length of ceiling.…

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    Faux Fireplace that Fools Everyone – Part 2

    Eight months is a long time for 2 families, a dog, and an ornery cat to share a house. So while I waited (impatiently…but that’s a different post) for our home to be built, I loved having a good reason to sneak out back to the garage for some peace and quiet. You can imagine there was a bit of work to do on this mantle (considering it was ripped from its home where it faithfully presided over fires since Lincoln’s time). If you didn’t read the last post on my mantle’s history, read it here. I’ll admit, I lost quite a bit of time, staring at its beat-up frame,…

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    Faux Fireplace that Fools Everyone – Part 1

    Hello friends. ♡ This post has been a long time in the making and I’m so excited about it! Everyone who sees my fireplace asks whether it’s gas or wood. Everyone thinks it’s real! Gas or Wood Fireplace When we met with our builder in December of 2015 (2 years ago!) to pick out our options, we knew a real fireplace was out of the budget. That was heartbreaking. But I had 8 months, living with my parents, while our home was being built to mull this over. How could I build a faux fireplace that gave me the feel of the real thing? Faux Fireplace Let’s face it. If you don’t…