So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem. Luke 2:4
Christmas was always a special time growing up. Yet, I can remember only one spent with aunts, uncles, grandparents, and cousins. My father was a career military officer, so we lived away from family.
But our home was never empty. It was filled with friends and airmen who also had no family nearby. Dad made certain no one under his command spent Christmas alone, and Mom made the holidays fun and festive for whoever filled our house.
Early in our marriage, when my husband was transferred from Texas to Georgia, my mother had one request. To spend Christmases together. So, every year, we filled the car with children and presents and made the eighteen-hour drive home for the holidays.
One December, as we began our journey, the worst Arctic cold snap on record hit north Texas. We’d planned to stay one night in a hotel along the way, but the farther we travelled, the more we realized that was impossible.
Hotels and restaurants had no power or water. Gas stations had fuel but no electricity to run the pumps. With no place to stop, our only choice was to keep going.
Ice frosted the inside of our car windows, so I tucked coats, blankets, stuffed animals, anything I could find around our preschool daughters to keep them warm.
And as my husband drove on, I prayed. Prayed we’d have enough fuel. Prayed the little car would keep running. Prayed our girls would stay warm. Prayed neither would need to stop for a potty break. Prayed for peace for my parents.
And, as I prayed, I remembered the journey of the first Christmas. Knowing the King of kings was about to be born, was Joseph worried when none of the inns had rooms and they had to spend the night in a stable, away from comfort and family? Or did he trust?
In the midst of the frigid December cold, peace blanketed me. The One Who had directed their journey was also directing ours.
I don’t remember the gifts exchanged that Christmas, the food we ate, the guests who shared our house. But I will always remember the joy glimmering in my parents’ eyes as they answered our knock. And God’s protection for our journey.
About the Author:
Carol James is an author of inspirational fiction. She lives in a small town outside of Atlanta, Georgia with her husband, Jim, and a perky Jack Russell “Terrorist,” Zoe.
Having always loved intriguing stories with happy endings, she was moved to begin writing to encourage others as she’d been encouraged by the works of other authors of inspirational fiction.
Her debut novel, Rescuing Faith, has been a number one best seller on Amazon, and her second novel, The Waiting, is scheduled for release in early 2019.
Carol enjoys spending time with her husband, children, and grandchildren, traveling with friends, and serving in the production department at her church. And, most days in the late hours of the night or the wee hours of the morning, she can be found bringing her newest novel to life.
About Mary’s Christmas Surprise:
Mary Sherman’s Christmas is nothing like she’s planned. Her fiancé has called off the engagement just days before Christmas, and her parents have gone on an anniversary cruise around the world.
Suddenly alone for the holidays, Mary returns to the comfort of her childhood home to spend Christmas in her parents’ empty house. There’s only one problem. The house is not empty. Unbeknownst to Mary, her parents have taken in a boarder, a handsome carpenter named Jake Wolesky.
Mary’s Christmas surprise may make this the best holiday ever.
About The Waiting:
When Katherine Herrington was a teenager, she made “The List” and believed God would bring her the husband she desired. That faith helped her to keep life under control just the way she likes it. But then Katherine loses her mother, her job, and her boyfriend, and after years of praying, she accepts the probability that God’s answer is, “No.”
A professional soccer player, Sam Tucker has lived the life of a celebrity in the UK only to discover that, despite all the wealth and fame he has acquired, his life is empty. He returns to the one place where life last had meaning, and goes in search of the one woman he’s loved since he was a teenager—Katherine. He wonders if she’ll remember him after all these years… And fears she just might.
As God weaves together a rejected proposal, a mission trip, and a devastating storm to turn their hearts toward Him and toward each other, Katherine and Sam will have to let go of their fears, find forgiveness and trust, and realize that their future together was worth the wait.