- ("In Akira Kurasawa's film Rhapsody in August, Richard Gere plays the American son of a Japanese man who comes to Nagasaki to meet the Japanese side of the family he has never met. It has been over fifty years since his father left Japan, and there has been almost no contact between the two sides of the family, especially since the war years..." and several other illustrations - recommended!!)
- ("My mother's 97, one of the frail elderly. Until last June when she had a stroke, she could shift herself from wheelchair to bed or toilet and could roll herself to the main dining room. She often traveled backward down B Hall. She said it was easier to push with her feet than pull with her hands..." and another illustration)
- Ever since Bobby's father had passed away three years ago, the family of five had struggled. But despite the lack of funds, Bobby's three sisters had already made beautiful gifts for their mother. But here it was Christmas Eve, and he had nothing. Bobby kicked the snow and walked down the street past all the stores, looking into each decorated window. It was starting to get dark and he reluctantly turned to walk home when suddenly his eyes caught the glimmer of the setting sun's rays reflecting off of something along the curb. He reached down and discovered a shiny dime. As he held his new found treasure, a warmth spread throughout his entire body and he walked into the first store he saw. His excitement quickly turned cold when salesperson after salesperson told him that he could not buy anything with only a dime. He saw a flower shop and went inside. When the shop owner asked if he could help him, Bobby presented the dime and asked if he could buy one flower for his mother's Christmas gift. The shop owner looked at Bobby and his ten cent offering. Then he put his hand on Bobby's shoulder and said to him, "You just wait here and I'll see what I can do for you."
- ("I have a biography of General Douglas MacArthur that was written by Bob Considine. The picture on the front cover shows the general standing like a boulder, looking off into the distance, with that famous corncob pipe in his mouth. You can almost hear him telling the people of the Philippines, 'I came through and I shall return'..." and several more)
- ("It is not good to be alone, not just physically as many are these Christmas days, but 'alone' in the spiritual journey. We need one another. We'd like to remain at the manger all soft and cuddly but… the Manger is only the beginning and Christmas does not stop at the manger. Maybe that restlessness is in our very bones to seek out and find 'home'....")
- ("One woman I know regularly locks herself in the furnace room when her husband comes home drunk. And I know what that is like because I remember as a child wanting a safe place to flee to. But there was no safe place. We had to go and sit in the car when my father was being angry and abusive. There was no other place to run to, even though we were part of a church and many of the people in the church knew what was going on...")
- Far more people are fleeing, the way Mary and Joseph and their baby had to flee, than we [can] imagine. I know of several in my congregation, and I'm sure there are many I don't know about. One woman regularly locks herself in the furnace room when her husband comes home drunk. And I know what that is like because I remember as a child wanting a safe place to flee to. But there was no safe place. We had to go and sit in the car when my father was being angry and abusive. There was no other place to run to, even though we were part of a church and many of the people in the church knew what was going on...
- ("Some Christmas's stay forever in our hearts and minds because they were so beautiful, so magical, so perfect. You got your Red Ryder BB gun or Malibu Barbie. The time the Christmas pageant went off without a hitch. The year when everyone got to come home. A blanket of snow on Christmas Eve draped everything in white and wonder...")
- The sentimental Christmas carol “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” may be the theme song for December 24 and 25. But by the 26th, many of us have changed our tune. It’s now “On The Road Again”. Whether traveling back from a family Christmas gathering, setting off on a snowy or sunny Christmas week vacation, or just returning to the routine of work and daily travel, journeying is a big part of season we call Christmastide, those Twelve Days of Christmas extending from Christmas Eve to Epiphany Eve.
- ("The sentimental Christmas carol I'll Be Home For Christmas may be the theme song for December 24 and 25. But by the 26th, many of us have changed our tune. It's now On The Road Again. Whether traveling back from a family Christmas gathering, setting off on a snowy or sunny Christmas week vacation, or just returning to the routine of work and daily travel, journeying is a big part of season we call Christmastide...")
- ("One of the hardest times of the year for me is always the time when we have to take down the Christmas tree. My wife Delight usually feels somewhat relieved that she can pack it all away and get the furniture back where it belongs, so life can get back to normal. But I'm not always quite so ready to have life go back to normal....")
- ("The best way I've ever heard this explained is in John Betjeman's poem Christmas 1954: 'The bells of waiting Advent ring, The Tortoise stove is lit again And lamp-oil light across the night Has caught the streaks of winter rain In many a stained-glass window sheen From Crimson Lake to Hooker's Green. The holly in the windy hedge And round the Manor House the yew..." and another illustration)
- ("Martin of Tours was still in the Roman Army, stationed near Amiens, but preparing to become a Christian. One cold day, he went out with his soldier companions. They wore heavy cloaks to protect them from the weather. Their cloaks were among their prized possessions. As they approached the city gates, they met a beggar, nearly naked and about to perish with the cold...")
- I better introduce myself. I’m Joseph Davidson - Mary’s husband. I feel like the father of the bride at a wedding. I don’t get much attention, but I get to pay the bills. Believe me, I know all about the cost of Christmas - not in money; but in blood, sweat and tears...
- ("Most houses probably still have those little snow globes. In many homes it was part of a the Christmas decorations. These ornaments are scenes or a statue encased in water. You picked up the globe, shook it and watched the 'snow' magically rise up in a swirl and cover the scene. Set it down and gradually things settled and became clear...")
- ("Please! Please, Pops! I'll be so good. I'll clean up my room and polish my halo, and deliver all the messages you want. So please, can't I have dancing lessons? Slowly, ever so slowly, the Creator's mighty head turned and looked down from the throne at the angel who was making such a spectacle of herself. The Creator's head shook back and forth as if in amazement...")
- ("The flight of Joseph with his family was not the first time Israel fled to Egypt for safety. And it would certainly not be the last time children had to flee for their lives from an evil king. I read this past week about the Kindertransport, that from Dec 1938 to August 1939 transported 10,000 Jewish children at risk from the Nazi regime...")
- ("Samuel T. Lloyd III, senior rector at Trinity Church in the City of Boston, told of the event that turned a good writer into a great one. Just before dawn on a cold winter morning in 1849, a group of Russian criminals were led out to face a firing squad. One of them was a young man named Feodor Dostoyevsky..." and another illustration)