Saint Stephen Lutheran Church was a happening place this weekend. Christmas was in the air. Holiday cheer abounded. In fact – there was so much Christmas spirit flowing and blowing – we couldn’t contain it to just one activity or even to one day!
This past weekend – it wasn’t just Saturday evening when the joys of the Christmas season could be experienced at Saint Stephen. We were rather Christmas-y on Sunday too. In fact – some of us participated in not one but TWO Christmas activities on Sunday morning in addition to worshipping our Lord!
We kicked off Sunday’s Christmas-y festivities with a Christmas crafting extravaganza.
Oh – how I love a good crafting session or 8,000. No day is complete (for me) unless I make something. I am always ready and willing to do a spot of making – crafting – or creating.
As I write this my knitting sits next to me. My current knitting project is my constant companion – “just in case.” I always – Always – ALWAYS have emergency knitting with me just in case I need to do a spot of knitting. I write blog posts with knitting. I hike with knitting. I grocery shop with knitting. I go to ALL appointments with knitting. I read and knit. Making and being creative is a way of life for me. I am never – ever bored – because I can always knit or plan and plot my next creative endeavor!
And I love sharing (evangelizing) about the joys and delights of being creative. Not as much as I enjoy evangelizing about God’s love – grace and mercy – but A LOT! It is simply amazing to be able to share how much fun being creative can be with others.
It is so much fun to assemble a table FULL of craft supplies and then to invite some folks to dig in and have fun and get creative! And that is exactly what happened on Sunday morning.
And WOW – did the creativity flow! I merely supplied the craft supplies and a few ideas and thoughts on what folks might do with some of the supplies. BUT the Lutherans supplied the creativity and the imagination and the laughter and the conversation and the chatter and the inventiveness and the total genius!
I was dazzled and delighted and amazed and thrilled by what my sisters and brothers in Christ created. It was seriously cool to see what folks came up with. There were so many awesome – unique creations. No one made the exact same thing. No one approached his or her project in the same way. Everyone had their own take on what to do with the supplies.
There was a dazzling variety of Christmas creations when all was said and done. Saint Stephen is blessed with some seriously gifted and talented folks. Artists abound. Creativity flows. All folks need are a few supplies and the time and the freedom to create and amazingly wonderful creations are created!
I love watching makers make and creators create and artists do their thing!
Creativity is truly a joy and a blessing and a gift to be a part of and to witness.
And following worship – the joys and blessings of Christmas continued to flow for those folks who stayed to help decorate Saint Stephen for Christmas. (Sorry but – elves – fairies – and pixies – do NOT decorate our church for Christmas each year. A dozen or so faithful – dedicated Lutherans do!)
The Christmas trees came out of the storage closets. The ladders were hauled out too. The hoisting and piecing together and plugging in began.
Fingers were crossed and silent prayers were said that the lights would work again this year and that no one would descend any ladders too quickly!
Once the Christmas tree puzzles were solved – the tree fluffing commenced in earnest. The fluffy – fluffing always taking a while. Christmas trees don’t take kindly to being shoved in a box or into a storage closet for 11 months of the year. It is funny how all trees (even artificial ones) need room to spread their branches and breathe!
Finally – the ornaments were unboxed. The hangers were located. The trees were adorned with their golden decor of balls and the names for our God (Emmanuel – Savior – King of Kings – Lord of Lords – Jesus). The fragile Chrismons made their annual appearance too. Crosses – a phoenix – a crown. Circles and a snake!
The candles were placed in the windows and hung in the windows. They are ready to light up the nighttime darkness and to remind us that Jesus is truly the Light of the World.
There was much chatter and chatting and even some shouting (but not angrily – just trying to locate a misplaced Lutheran or two who had wandered off). There was laughter and joy and fellowship too. We joked and teased and enjoyed the great blessing of each other’s company.
I give our Lord thanks for the blessing of this Christian community. I give thanks for friendship and fellowship and chatter and conversation and communion and laughter and JOY. I give thanks for those folks who show up and help out – again and again and again! I give thanks that I don’t have to do this alone!