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How One Lady Got Into the Christmas SpiritPosted Monday, December 13, 2010, at 4:30 PM
Christmas at our house has always had a Christmas tree, gifts under the tree and Christmas music. Having been raised in a happy Christian home, I can remember Christmas as being the happiest season of the year. Even when my dad was out of work for a few months when we were just kids, all five of us had toys to unwrap. Later, we found out our parents had bought the toys at a thrift store. Actually, that made the occasion one of our most memorable Christmases. We learned that Christmas was not about getting expensive gifts but about giving from the heart.
On the other hand, Sue was not raised in a happy home. Just to be brief, she could only remember Christmas in her childhood as a time of drinking and fighting. So she always had a hard time getting into the Christmas spirit. To her, Christmas always brought back those bad memories of her mother and stepdad getting drunk at the bar and fighting.
Things began to change a few years ago, when Sues's stepdad told her of the One he met on his birthday. As she did every year, Sue called him on the phone to wish him a happy birthday. He told her that he wanted to surprise her and said, "You won't believe who I met; I've met Jesus Christ!" He then told her the story of how he was at the end of his hope and had knelt by his bedside and asked Jesus to come into his heart. What a change He made in my father in law's life!
That was just the beginning. In 2002, someone gave Sue a tapestry wallhanging with nativity scenes on it for Christmas. That Christmas season, Sue said, "You know, I think I'll start collecting nativity scenes." From that time on she has collected nativity scenes.
Now as soon as Thanksgiving is over, she has me bring in the plastic toat containers containing her many nativity scenes. Every ornament on the tree is a nativity scene. There are over one-hundred nativity scenes hung on the walls and placed on shelves thoughout the kitchen, dining room and living room. Even the table cloth has a nativity scene on it! My Aunt Linda, who is a missionary in the Congo sent us a nativity scene handcrafted by the Congo people from bamboo. That is the number one nativity set! She has one made from bees wax. There's one with a woman wiseman (a wise woman) in it! She gets her nativity scenes as gifts from people she has cared for or from those she works with. She just recently bought a very unique one from a yard sale put on by the 2nd General Baptist Church. It is a three level pagoda with angels on the top level, shepherds on the second, and wisemen on the third.
That's how one lady got into the Christmas spirit! I trust that those who read this have the Spirit of Christmas in their hearts and homes. From our home to yours, have a very Merry Christmas! May the Christ of Christmas fill your heart and home with Love, Joy, and Peace!
Richard and Susan (Sue) Swift
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My wife Susan (Sue) and I have lived in Soddard County since September of '96. We both graduated from Bible Missionary Institute, our denomination's small four year Bible college in Rock Island, Illinois. I was born and raised in Pomona, California while my wife was raised in Monmouth, Illinois. I am an ordained minister in the Bible Missionary Church. We attend and are members of the Dexter Bible Missionary Church. I've been employed by Tyson Foods for 14 years. My wife is a CNA. I've always been conservative in my political views and have always been active in politics and the Pro-Life movement. My politics have not always been Republican. From 2003-2009 I was vice-chairman of the Prohibition National Committee, the steering arm of the Prohibition Party. In '09, I joined the Constitution Party of Missouri. But, I've been attending the GOP rallys and club meetings since last year and have been campaigning for certain Republican candidates since we moved to this area. I'm on the SEMO Life Chain Committee.
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