We’ve been getting our house ready for Christmas all week. We went and picked out a tree. We dug out the decorations and hung the stocking by the chimney with care. But something was missing.
This morning I realized we had not yet put out the nativity. How could I miss that? I braved the freezing cold garage to find the set. The wisemen are missing. Off on some extravagant journey I’m sure. But the lowly animals and the holy family were ready. And there they sit, on my grandparent’s record player, reminding me that there is more to be done.
Whatever else I think I need to do to be ready for Christmas; baking cookies, going to parties and packing to fly to warmer weather (ahem, I mean, go see family!), pales in comparison to what I really need to do. To quiet my heart and head. To clear space amongst the busyness of the season to celebrate the birth of hope. Then I will be ready.
Oh, and find those darn wisemen!
I’ll be honest. I gotta have coffee to be a fully functioning person. So today’s word was an easy one, because I’m never really awake until my mug is empty!
I had to get ready for work by candlelight today. The power was out in our neighborhood this morning, which was unfortunate. Putting makeup on in the dark is an adventure.
Yet the little light provided was sufficient. And while I appreciate enough lighting to properly apply my eyeliner, I recognized that I didn’t need a flood of light to do so.
So often I expect the good things in life to come in large quantities. I want a flood. The more the better right? But sometimes, we need to go without to realize how little we really need.
Today the husband and I went to a tree farm to kick off our holiday season. The day could not have been more beautiful. Clear blue everywhere you looked. The air was way more than nippy, but we we were excited, so the frozen toes were worth it.
We decided to take the truck today. You know, the truck that made me the Wife of the Year when I told my husband he could buy it. A 1967 Ford that runs so loud you can’t really talk while driving. But my husband loves that truck, and I could tell how happy it made him to be together for the day, riding along in the sun, off to get out Christmas tree. And to be fair, it is a really cool truck.
I digress. So we pull up at the tree farm, hop out of the truck and are overwhelmed with that wonderful Christmas tree smell. We walked around in sunshine and finally picked out the perfect tree. Right before Kris started to saw our little slice of holiday cheer I had a “moment.” It was a day of perfection: loving husband, beautiful weather, the intoxicating smell of pine. I can’t describe it as anything more than peace.
There is something special about family. No matter the differences, the miles or years in between, we are bound to our family.
I have to say that I am so grateful to have family with me out here on the West Coast. They keep me grounded and remind me that I am bound to something strong, beautiful and deep. Giving thanks for family tonight.
We were challenged in church today to join in an Advent practice called Rethink Christmas. It is a photo-a-day challenge to capture different aspects of Advent. Pastor Kathleen challenged us to take home these cards and find and share through picture or word.
So I accept this challenge. I will be using my blog each day to capture these themes. Will you join me? Could be fun!
Day One: GO
I keep singing the song in my head, “Go make a difference, we can make a difference. Go make a difference in the world.”
The kids in church today had a little skit. Super hero UMCOR girl was there to tell us how to help others around the world by making emergency kits. I just loved how excited the kids got about sharing how we can help. And I thought, “even if we can’t go to where the disasters are physically, our presence and spirit and prayers can certainly go anywhere they are needed!
It’s what I love about being a part of the connectional church, the global UMC. We have the ability to go and be with those in their greatest time of need. For our sisters and brothers in the Philippines, UMCOR was able to go on our behalf, with our support. When someone in our community is hurting, we are called to go be with them. From global to local, I’m glad my feet are called to GO.