On the 4th Day of CHRISTmas…Give-away with Susanne Scheppmann

Welcome to day four of the 12 Days of CHRISTmas giveaway!!! There will be holiday ideas, easy recipes and both practical and pampering prizes to win. Best of all, each day you will meet one of my fellow “sistas” from the Proverbs 31 Ministries speaking team. Get to know them and their wonderful resources including books and teaching cd’s. Why, you might even just discover the speaker you have been looking for to appear at your next event.

So get in the holiday spirit. Tune in each day. Hop on and leave a comment. The more you leave, the better your chances of winning. The 12 daily winners will be announced on the 13th day of December so comment on all 12 posts if you can! 

DAY FOUR:

Today you will have the pleasure of meeting my friend Susanne Scheppmann. She is a gifted writer, an inspiring speaker and loves to help women dive into God’s word. And actually, her giveaway today will do just that!! Read on and enjoy this fourth day of Christmas as you visit with this wonderful, warm gal from wonderful and warm Las Vegas!!! Here she is…..

From the Heart of Susanne Scheppmann:

Merry Christmas!  I am writing this from my home in Las Vegas, Nevada.  It is so warm here that I am leaving the door open!  It’s so weird to have the Christmas tree decorated and this warm of weather. 

 

I have discovered peace from a complicated past and faith for the future. Because of this miracle, I am passionate that all women discover the healing power of Jesus Christ.  This passion to share has been fulfilled as a speaker with Proverbs 31 Ministries.  Plus, it has birthed four books. 

           

·      Divine Prayers for Despairing Parents (Available for pre-orders)

·      Birds in My Mustard Tree–How to Grow Your Faith

·      Perplexing Proverbs—A Bible Study for Women

·      Embraced by the Father (Available October 2009)

 

My husband and I are empty-nesters. However, the nest is visited often by my three grandchildren.   They are all toddlers so the house is baby-proofed to the point I can’t find anything.  Oh, but they are so worth it the extra work.   As Christmas approaches we are baking, wrapping presents, and most importantly learning to love Jesus more.

·      Susanne, tell us what is on the docket for you this holiday season. Where will you be and what will you be doing?

 

This year I am spending Christmas at home in Las Vegas, Nevada.  It will be nice to have Christmas at home.  But the best is my daughter-in-law will be cooking Christmas dinner! 

 

·      How has the way you celebrate changed over the years as your family has grown?

 

My children are all adults, but we have been blessed with three darling grandchildren.  It is so fun to have children around for the holidays.  They inspire me to remember the joy Christmas.

 

·      What is your favorite holiday food? Your favorite holiday song?

 

I love the standard turkey dinner with all the trimmings.  I could eat it all year round.  My favorite Christmas song is “O Holy Night.”  

 

 

·      Any take-it-slow advice you can offer us that will help to relieve yuletide stress?

 

My best advice for alleviating stress is cut back on activities that you feel you “have to-do” verses the ones you truly enjoy.  I quit sending out Christmas cards several years ago—I don’t miss it a bit.

Thanks so much for stopping by for a visit today!!

My pleasure!!! Have a wonderful Christmas everyone!!!

Now for the Give-Away: Well, since this is the fourth day of Christmas and the traditional gift is four calling birds, we will attempt to stick close to that theme with today’s giveaway. Susanne has graciously decided to give away a copy of her book Birds in My Mustard Tree.

Birds in My Mustard Tree is a six-week small group study that looks at the subject of faith as an active, growing part of our walk with God. This study begins with a review of the concept of faith that leads to lessons on exercising faith, amazing faith, shattered faith, resting in faith, and a stronger faith. Susanne examines several heroes of faith in the Bible and adds modern anecdotes along with her personal stories to make this process result in a solid faith in God. Faith may begin as a mustard seed, but the goal is to expand it until we have birds roosting on our mustard tree of faith.

If you are longing for a new Bible study to help you develop a stronger relationship with God, this is it! So, to be entered into the drawing for this wonderful resource, leave a comment today for us. Susanne mentioned that her favorite Christmas song is O Holy Night. What is yours?

I will start. Although I love many Christmas songs, the one that has the most meaning to me is actually The 12 Days of Christmas. No, really!!!! My friend Lisa Whelchel wrote in her great book The Adventure of Christmas about the meaning behind this song. The song was actually written in code to Christians long ago. The different gifts each represent something God gave mankind. We go over these twelve gifts with our kids each Christmas and it makes what was thought to be a rather silly song become very meaningful! Here is how the story is told:

From 1558 until 1829 people in England were not allowed to practice their faith openly. During this era someone wrote ‘The Twelve Days of Christmas’ as a kind of secret catechism that could be sung in public without risk of persecution. The song has two levels of interpretation: the surface meaning plus a hidden meaning known only to members of the church.

Each element in the carol is a code word for a religious reality.

First of all, “my true love” is our Heavenly Father.

1. The partridge in a pear tree is Jesus Christ on the cross.

2. The two turtledoves are the Old and New Testaments.

3. Three French hens stand for faith, hope and love.

4. The four calling birds are the four Gospels.

5. The five gold rings recall the Pentateuch (Old Testament Law) the first five books of the Old Testament.

6. The six geese a-laying stand for the six days of creation.

7. Seven swans a-swimming represent the sevenfold gifts of the Spirit. 

8. The eight maids a-milking are the eight beatitudes. (Matt. 5)

9. Nine ladies dancing are the nine fruits of the spirit (Gal.5). (love, joy, peace patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.)

10. The ten lords a-leaping are the Ten Commandments.

11. Eleven pipers piping stand for the eleven faithful disciples.

12. Twelve drummers drumming symbolize the 12 points of belief in the Apostles Creed.

There you have it, the HIDDEN meaning of “The Twelve Days of Christmas” and the secret behind the song.

Now, to show you my favorite contemporary rendition of this song. Get ready to laugh for the next 3 minutes and 30 seconds. These guys are an absolute hoot!!! (And, so you get the full effect, know that a dradle is a Jewish children’s toy played with during Hanukkah.) Now promise me you won’t forget to hit your back arrow, return here and leave a comment to be entered in the drawing. Pinky promise? Okay…..get ready……click here to see this wonderful spoof of my favorite Christmas song.

Are you back? Was that not the zaniest holiday song ever? Okay, cyber-sisters, it is your turn. What is your favorite Christmas carol or song? Susanne is waiting to give one of you a free, faith-filled and hands-on resource just for telling!!!

Harmonious Blessings,

Karen

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40 Comments

  1. Y’all, I want that book!!!!! I need that book!!!

    My fav Christmas song? Hmm….My goodness, I can’t think of the name of it right now. It’s the one that starts out with all the french horns and it’s awesome. :)

  2. When i hear “O Holy night” especially in the x-mass eve service i get always goose bumps …….
    I was directed too your blog from Renee’s swope and loved it and learn aout those 12 meanings and laughed. I heard my dd singing this song in a dutch traslation what they did ifor a music class .So i have now a topic for the coming weeks also while focusing with them on x-mas. Ths and i will pass by the coming 12 days too

  3. My favorite Christmas song has to be Mary did you know, and Silent night. I love Mary did you know b/c it really makes you think- what was Mary thinking- She knew he was Christ, but did she really grasp that? To think she was kissing the face of God. How amazing is that?

  4. I love, love, love Christmas music. To choose just one is tough. So will just mention one of many favorites, Silent Night. Especially sung acapella by candlelight.

  5. I love so many. One i rarely hear and when i do its
    always presented as ab instrumental rather than the
    lyrics is a French carol “Bring a torch Jeanette Isabella”

  6. I really like Do you Hear what I hear? and Mary Did you know. I also love to play Christmas songs and have at least 20 CD’s.

  7. It is so hard to pick out a favorite song. I really enjoy them all. I had heard that the 12 days had a Christian meaning at one time, so that was very interesting. Silent Night was the first song that came to my mind so that is the one I will choose but I love them all. I recently went to the Casting Crowns Christmas Concert…if you get a chance to go you should, so that is what is in my cd player at home is Casting Crowns and Natalie Grant, Pure ENRG is in my cd at school and the others are in the house or my vehicle. It was a great way to get the Christmas season started!! I will have to check that video out later, it is blocked here.

  8. Well, I’m finally back. I took a little detour. After hearing one song – I wanted to hear more! Those guys are good – and funny! I added their CD to my wish-list.

    As to my favourite Christmas song – that’s hard. I have so many :o) Whenever the TransSiberian Orchestra comes on the radio with their “Christmas Canon”, I stop and enjoy – it’s so special to hear children’s voices at Christmas and I’m a classical gal at heart.

    Thanks for sharing the meaning behind the words in the song above. That was my Grandfather’s favourite Christmas song so it has always been special to me.

    Have a great day!
    Joy

  9. Thanks so much for having this fun contest! This isn’t one of the “traditional” Christmas songs I guess but I love Roger Whittaker’s Tiny Angels. Growing up we listened to his tape and every year as soon as the season begins, my CD goes in and I play that CD over and over. I just love it.

  10. All Christmas music is my favorite! But if I had to choose one, I’d pick Away In A Manger.

    It’s weird to think of Christmastime as warm. I’m sitting here wrapped up in my fleece jacket, tree lights on and thinking about getting some more hot coffee!

  11. I love Joy to the World, too, but I guess my all time favorite is to hear the Hallelujah Chorus at Christmas time. It reminds me of angels singing the night of Christ’s birth.

  12. I love Christmas songs! My favorite is “Angels We Have Heard on High”. When I was in HS choir we learned a really cool descant for that song that I still sing when we get to sing that song in church!

  13. My daughter asked me this same question, immediately, “Joy to the World” came out of my mouth! I’m not familiar with your book that you are offering, but I am getting ready to check it out. I love birds…love the symbol of feathers and the visual impact they have on me….. God Bless, Stacey

  14. How fun to hear from a fellow Las Vegan!! I agree that it’s totally weird to have the windows open at Christmas time.

    My favorite Christmas song is probably “Away in the Manger”. I just love when little kids sing that song.

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