Opening Prayer: Child
The Symbols of Christmas (taken from this site: Luv's Creations)
Preparation- gather these items: Christmas tree, a star, a red ornament, a bell, a candle (or christmas lights), a candy cane, a wreath with a red bow, Santa Claus picture. You can pick and choose and only do the ones you want. Paraphrase the sections based on the ages of your children.
Christmas tree- Green is the second color of Christmas. The evergreen with its unchanging color represents the hope of eternal life in Jesus. Its needles point heavenward as a reminder that man's thoughts should turn heavenward as well.
A Star-The star was the heavenly sign of promise. God promised a Savior for the world and the star was the sign of the fulfillment of that promise of the night that Jesus Christ was born. God always fulfills His promises and that the wise will still seek Him.
Red-the first color of Christmas. It is the color of the life giving blood that flows through our veins. It is the symbol of God's greatest gift. Christ gave His life and shed his blood for them that they might have eternal life.
Bells-Just as lost sheep are guided to safety by the sound of the bell, it continues to ring today for all to be guided to the fold. Follow the true Shepherd who gave His life for the sheep.
A candle- The glow of the candle represents how man can show his thanks for the gift of God's Son that Christmas Eve long ago. Follow in Christ's footsteps... to go about doing good. Let your light shine before men that all may see it and glorify God. This is what is symbolized when the twinkling lights shine on the tree like hundreds of bright, shining candles, each of them representing one of God's precious children, their light shining for all to see.
A candy cane- White to symbolize the virgin birth and sinless nature of Jesus. The shape 'J' to represent the precious name of Jesus who came to earth as our Savior. It also represents the crook of the Good Shepherd which he uses to reach down into the ditches of the world to lift out the fallen lambs who, like sheep, have gone astray. The original candy cane had three small red stripes which are the stripes of the scourging Jesus received by which we are healed, and a large red stripe that represents the shed blood of Jesus so that we can have eternal life.
A wreath tied with a bright red bow-The bow reminds us of the bond of perfection which is love. The wreath embodies all the good things about Christmas for those with eyes to see and hearts to understand. It contains the colors of red and green and the heaven turned needles of the evergreen. The bow tells the story of good will towards all and its color reminds us of Christ's sacrifice. Even the wreath's very shape is symbolic, representing eternity and the eternal nature of Christ's love. It is a circle without beginning and without end.
Santa Claus- Represents the spirit of family fun and the joy of giving and receiving.
Make this Baby Jesus
or this angel ornament
or this Christmas tree
Closing Song: Christmas Bells, Children's Songbook #54
Candy Cane Cookies (Make dough ahead of time. If you kids like Play Doh, they'll love making these!)
|1||cup butter or margarine, softened|
|1||teaspoon peppermint extract (I prefer almond extract)|
|3 1/2||cups Gold Medal® all-purpose flour|
|1||teaspoon baking powder|
|1/2||teaspoon red food color|
|2||tablespoons finely crushed peppermint candies|
|Stir together 1 cup sugar, the butter, milk, vanilla, peppermint (or almond) extract and egg in large bowl. Stir in flour, baking powder and salt. Divide dough in half. Stir food color into 1 half. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours. (I didn't need to refrigerate it)|
|Heat oven to 375ºF.|
|Stir together peppermint candy and 2 tablespoon sugar; set aside.|
|For each candy cane, shape 1 rounded teaspoon dough from each half into 4-inch rope by rolling back and forth on floured surface. Place 1 red and white rope side by side; press together lightly and twist. Place on ungreased cookie sheet; curve top of cookie down to form handle of cane.|
|Bake 9 to 12 minutes or until set and very light brown. Immediately sprinkle candy mixture over cookies. Remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Cool completely, about 30 minutes|