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From the Editor -
Bill Shurkey
Featured Poems
lifeThe Missing Christmas Gifts
By Bill Shurkey

"What did you get for Christmas"? This is perhaps the most often asked question between Christmas and New Year's Day. I'm sure the combined lists would make fascinating reading. Of course, for the men, socks are a no-brainer, with wallets and after-shave close behind. Jewelry is a sure bet for the ladies and kitchen appliances (ladies always love that personal touch!) probably running a close second. And of course, for the kids it was toys, toys and more toys. Most of us spent more than we should have on Christmas but felt the expense worth it.

Contrast this Christmas with one from a more simpler time. I'm reminded of one celebrated 150 years ago in Victorian England. It takes place in Dickens' fictional home of the Cratchits. A good Christmas for Bob was a day off spent with his family and a hot meal, while his children were satisfied with oranges and nuts in their stockings and a warm fire to sit by. Even then the little they had for Christmas cost them dearly, but they too thought the expense worth it. It seems that no one was a Scrooge back then, except, well Ö Scrooge himself.

Now that you've had a quick glimpse of a Christmas past and present letís look at some things you didn't find under the Christmas tree.

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Peace
By Lynne Fickett

Peace is found in a still, small voice
That whispers softly and gently in our ear.
Leading us to sweet surrender,
In His arms we'll take our rest.

Peace eludes us when we wander
Away from the One who gave us life.
In weakness, we leave the haven of His care
Exchanging it for life's worldly woes.

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Storms of Life
By Marie Williams

The storms of life have taken hold,
They toss me to and fro.
Yet I know I'm not alone, my hand,
The Lord enfolds.

This time of loss gives way to pain,
I know in time shall cease.
Until the pain within subsides,
God loves and comforts me.

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life

Release Your Grace
By Evelaca Dobbins

When my heart can't release
the hurt and the pain
When resentment
still remains
When the mood of my house
is sad
When the demons that hound me
are found glad
When things deteriorate
like a house built on sand
When there is no happiness to be had
Lord, I seek your face
Lord, please
Release your grace.

Evelaca Dobbins is a married mother with four children and is majoring in psychology at William Jewell College in Liberty, Missouri. She has been writing Christian poems, commentaries, and journals since 1996. She acknowledges her God-given gift of poetry and plans to continue using it to further spread the Gospel.