usually christmas catches me off guard in my already somewhat chaotic disorganized world.
and then the rush of trying to figure out how to quickly and cheaply create a christmas for emri that will be lovely and memorable takes over. and time seems to happen to me.
this time i’ve waited for christmas. and when i say christmas i do not mean presents and decorations and little warm glowing twinkle lights (which i love).
but i’ve been waiting for Jesus. because deep within my soul, i’m aching for him.
i ache for him. with a longing that i can’t express.
i feel like there is this quintessential picture of christmas that comes with expectation.
warm cozy families celebrating the goodness in their lives. their warm homes. houses filled with children and laughter. homes that are spacious with fully stocked kitchens. and soon to be wrapped presents.
things worth celebrating. things that should be celebrated.
but my mind cannot stop thinking about all the families that don’t have those things. the families that have experienced an excruciating amount of loss and death. the tragedies that we encounter from afar. and the tragedies that we encounter painfully close. the mothers who are barren. and those who are not barren in the sense that they cannot have children, but barren in other things they have longed for and waited for with no avail.
what does the hope of a rescuer, a God-hero, the hope of heaven wrapped in swaddling clothes born in humble circumstances mean for them? what does it mean for us?
the hope of a savior means that our pain and longings matter to someone bigger than us.
it means that we are not hopeless in our circumstances.
it means there is a God who conquered pain and death and will one day heal and recover all the devastation that we have encountered in the world.
a loving Father, who is right now creatively intervening on your behalf. to counter the hurtful, empty, lonely places in your life with a restorative divine move.
it means that we are not alone.
it means i do not have to be stuck in comparison. in my lack of self control and discipline at times. it means that i can have humble means and still have more joy than i know what to do with. it means that although i don’t know how, Jesus will teach me how to be an incarnational presence in the hurting places in kansas city. it means that Jesus is with me! that at all times I have the presence of my father on all sides of me. fighting on my behalf.
it means that i’m forgiven. that God sees me as though i’m perfect. and whole. through Jesus.
and so his favor and steadfast love surround me thick like a shield.
but without the birth of Jesus we are stuck, broken, and dying.
and so with anticipation and full hearts we are in awe at the memory of his birth.
i wish i could have been there that night. with the three wise men who through faith traveled by way of a quiet luminous gleaming star to a stable in bethlehem. that hushed night. and that sweet baby. swaddled. sleeping quietly and glowing. (as all newborns do). as heaven silently watched in awe and wonder as God’s redemption plan began to unfold.
we can hope, dream, and believe now.
with more awe and wonder than any child could ever have over santa and his sleigh.
the birth of Jesus means that although i struggled with infertility for years, i could hope in having a second child.
it means that i could be surprised with another beating heart in my womb 9 months after my miracle son, samuel was born.
it means that somehow even with the odds against me, i could be a mother of 3 children.
without the hope of heaven we just ache.
we long, we wait, we hope, we anticipate
and he meets us in our longing.
and here is our hope in jesus:
every languish of creation is heard.
…and he will raise her up and wipe away all tears from her eyes- and there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying, nor any more pain, for the former things will have passed away, and he that sits upon the throne will say,
“behold i make all things new”.