About the Author

Angela Nazworth is a shame-fighting storyteller who writes mostly about the beauty of grace, faith, friendship, vulnerability and community. She is a wife and a mother of two. Angela's also an encourager, a lover of good books, coffee, girl's night out, sunshine, and waterfalls. In the 15 years since she...

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  1. Angela,
    Your post brought back a sweet memory of my dad. When I was little, for an extra special treat, we’d pile in the Chevy station wagon and head to Baskin Robbins for ice cream. I remember teasing my dad that for all of their famed 31 flavors of ice cream, my dad always picked vanilla. I do remember thinking…how boring.

    But, when I went to buy pure vanilla extract for some baking, I was reminded of it’s great price that you so beautifully pointed out. How can we even begin to fathom the extraordinary gift and ultimate sacrifice that was brought forth in the world on Christmas?? Jesus’ love is often described as being fragrant….vanilla – pure – white – fragrant – of great worth and value. Wonderful reminder. I will never look at vanilla the same.
    Blessings this Advent season,
    Bev xx

    • Vanilla goes with any flavor of ice cream and is prefect with pie or cake. I love to for a special treat put vanilla in coffee – it adds a wonderful fragrance to it. Plain vanilla has many ways how it compliments other flavors. I like to think often I like to be a person who is plain vanilla that can compliment others’ lives.
      Sweet blessing,
      Cindy B.

  2. I’m thinking about my vanilla-scented candles and the soft light they shed on the room while giving off the scent I love. Now, you have given me one more reason to enjoy their beauty!

  3. Angela, SO beautiful!!! Thank you. Years ago an aunt brought me back real vanilla extract (in a plastic water bottle because that’s all the people had!) from Haiti after a missions trip. It completely changed how I viewed vanilla. The liquid is so potent a few drops flavor twelve dozen cookies! Even after sharing half, and baking regularly, that bottle of vanilla extract lasted me almost fifteen years! It has the most unique taste – vanilla, for sure – but unmistakably pure. I’d never considered this purity in the context of Christmas. Such a beautiful post! Thank you!

  4. Love this! Vanilla is soft yet bold, aromatic on it’s own yet complimentary to almost any other sweet scent. Simple, yet one of the most valued and important flavors.

    When I think of the Christmas story – a baby born to save the world, a man who was perfect yet died for all of our sins, a simple story that is also the most important one we can tell.

    Grateful for your words this morning and for a “vanilla” reminder of what Christmas is all about!

  5. I love vanilla, so I truly appreciate your message. Artificial vanilla is so disappointing once you’ve tasted the pure, real vanilla. Now I can meditate on savoring the hope Jesus brings to the world.

  6. Thank you for sharing. I am looking forward to an opportunity to enjoy pure vanilla. I have been meditating in a book by Joseph Prince called “The Priceless Gift of Righteousness.” The Truth is doing an awesome work in my heart as it continues to go deeper and push out the lies I had taken in over the years. Our righteousness is a Blood bought gift!!!!!!!

  7. L. O. V. E. This!!!
    And I have learned something today about Vanilla & I’ll never look at it the same!!
    It’s got me thinking too…I seriously can’t live without it. Any type of remotely sweet food, requires vanilla.
    Up until now, I can honestly say I have taken the use of vanilla for granted. I had no idea it was a precious resource!
    (See where I’m going with this? )
    I absolutely have a new appreciation for vanilla, and for the gift of my salvation.
    How often are my quick prayers, meaningless or filled with flipancy?
    The ability to pray at any given moment is truly like this vanilla. The access to the “sweetness” of God, is not something to be taken lightly but to be a little more careful with, knowing that it is incredibly valuable.
    Father, thank You for this revelation to my heart, my soul. May I be so much more aware of your activity around me

    And thank you so much for sharing this today!!

  8. Oh, I so love this. Over the years I have begun to dread Christmas and the expectations that are built around it. This is such a wonderful reminder of what Christmas should really be about. Thank you I am looking forward to a simple Christmas focused on Jesus…..

  9. Great post Angela! I love pure vanilla. Whether it’s the scent of vanilla candles that tickles my nose with memories, the taste of special treats that causes me to audibly say, “mmmm” or the depth of color that is so pleasing to my eye, I am simply delighted by it. I can indeed connect with you on comparing vanilla to the purity of Christmas. I can embrace Christ with you and with the season that celebrates His entrance into the world. It’s all simply delightful.

    Merry Christmas

  10. Thank you, Angela, for this lovely reflection. Luscious vanilla flavor has always been one of my favorites, and in its purest form, vanilla is also a beautiful scent. My great grandmother couldn’t afford perfume, so she scented herself with vanilla and apparently my great grandfather thought it was divine!

    Thank you, especially, for your analogy. This season is meant to be about purity of intention – our hearts focused on Christ and his endless love for us. Have a blessed Advent.

  11. Oh, Angela. I loved this post. I had no idea that vanilla was the fruit of a certain sort of orchid. You’re so right. Vanilla does get a bad rap. And I love how you turned us toward the real essence of Christmas. This particular Christmas season holds a lot of busy-ness for reasons I can’t go into. In the midst of all that is weighing on my shoulders, I’m seeking Jesus. To know and walk in His hope, to savor His love for me. And to cherish the gift He offers all of us. Thank you for the reminder that Christmas is exquisite and to be savored, not hurried through only to come out at December 26th exhausted.

    Have yourself a vanilla Christmas too. 🙂

  12. What a delightful Christmas wish–to enjoy an exquisite, fragrant, and flavorful vanilla Christmas! I had no idea vanilla came from a rare orchid, was such a precious commodity in centuries past, and is the most labor-intensive agricultural crop. It does indeed lend itself to analogy with Jesus. Our vanilla candles will take on new meaning, thanks to you, Angela!

  13. Angela,

    Thanks for the history lesson on vanilla. My aging dad loves ice cream. Now he seems to really enjoy “plain” vanilla. It is no longer plain to me. It is an exquisite scent that I love and I will treasure its price & the price that Christ paid at Christmas. There is a song “Leaving Heaven” by Matthew West that explains precisely how I feel about Christmas.

    Well, it’s been real nice living way up here
    In paradise, over the atmosphere
    But I can’t stay long, gotta make my way
    I’m leaving Heaven today
    You see the world is dark and it needs a light
    I’m gonna hang a star in the eastern sky
    So everybody’s gonna know where I touch down
    I’m leaving Heaven right now
    I’m gonna walk around that broken Earth
    Trading in these streets of gold
    So if you ever wonder how much you’re worth
    You should know
    That you’re the reason why I’m leaving Heaven
    Ain’t gonna be no kingdom, ain’t gonna be no crown
    Just a little old manger, in a little old town
    But it’ll do just fine for this humble King
    I’m leaving Heaven let all the angels sing
    I’m gonna walk around that broken Earth
    Trading in these streets of gold
    So if you ever wonder how much you’re worth
    You should know
    You’re the reason why I’m leaving Heaven
    And when my time comes to an end
    I’ll lay down my life like a truest friend
    And when I get back home, I’m gonna make some room
    So, don’t you worry, ‘cause I’m coming back for you
    And you will say goodbye to that broken Earth
    You’re gonna walk on streets of gold
    And if you ever wonder what my love is worth
    Well you should know
    That I’m the reason you’ll be seeing Heaven
    Oh, you’re the reason why I’m leaving Heaven
    I’m leaving Heaven

    Blessings and a very Vanilla Christmas to all!

  14. Loved this! I appreciate true vanilla — and my husband, too, makes great home-made ice cream. But You shared some things I’d never heard before. Like, vanilla is very labor-intensive and the second most expensive spice. Then you broke it down and related it beautifully to the pure Christmas story. Excellent and grasp-able. Well done and insightful.

    Thank you!