Saturday, December 23, 2017

Ten Things of Thankful: Pre-Christmas Musings

The darkness of the night slowly gives way to the light of day. Besides  the ticking of the clock, all is quiet. Multiple cars, with out-of-state license plates, fill the driveway--evidence that the home's usually-empty bedrooms are now occupied. Today's forecast calls for lots of laughter, good conversation, and shared activities. The anticipation does not demand a hurried approach to the day, however, and a peaceful mood envelopes the house. 

In this calm moment, I reflect on the past week. The nearing of the closure of 2017 prompts my mind to go back further--to reflect not only on the week, but on the year, then back yet further to when the visiting adults were children, then back to when I was a child. More than a half-century's worth of Christmases mesh together. The details take back-stage to the warm feelings of contentment and joy. 

Of course, some years were more challenging than others. No one is immune to illness, grief, tragedy, or pain. Everyone will probably experience "survival mode" at least once--a period of time where just making it through the day is the accomplishment.

While I don't know everyone's pain, I know mine. While I can't imagine everyone's struggles, I know mine. While I can't fathom everyone's grief, I know mine. I know that pain, struggles, and grief can be overwhelming in the moment, but I also know that they don't have to be eternally all-consuming.

I don't have all the answers for everyone, but I know what works for me: faith. Faith that the birth of a little baby many years ago gave hope to the world. Faith that He lived a perfect life as an example to us. Faith that happiness comes not through the absence of trials, but in clinging to the hope that eventually good will come out of our experiences. Faith that joy, peace, and love are available even during challenging times. Faith that He can strengthen me. 

All of the things I am thankful for are possible because Jesus Christ was born, fulfilled His purpose here on earth, and had perfect love.  

I am thankful. 

Merry Christmas!


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16 comments:

  1. A beautifully written post! Merry Christmas to you and yours.

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    1. Thank you. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

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  2. Such a lovely post. So important not to allow sadness define us so that we can enjoy the present. Merry Christmas to you and your family!

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    1. Hope your Christmas was wonderful. Happy New Year!

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  3. Best of all to you and John and the family on these holidays and the coming New Year

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  4. Merry Christmas to you and your family. Looking forward to blogging with you in 2018.

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    1. I'm hoping to give blogging a bit more attention next year.

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    1. To you as well, and Happy New Year!

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  6. This hits so close to home for me, Kristi. This..."pain, struggles, and grief can be overwhelming in the moment, but I also know that they don't have to be eternally all-consuming." Yeah. Definitely overwhelming in the moment and so hard to find that hope that it won't be eternal and all-consuming. Faith is a tough one some days. Thanks for your post - I am glad I saw your words. Merry Christmas to you!

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    1. Oh, Lisa, I hope that you are feeling hopeful soon. Life can be tough, and I think it's harder during the holidays--when the Norman Rockwell ideal stands in such contrast to the reality of what actually happens. Feel free to private message me if you'd like to chat.

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  7. Beautiful post. Sorry I am so late, I hope you had a blessed Christmas.

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    1. No need to apologize. :-) I did have a nice Christmas, and hope you did, too.

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Thanks for making this a conversation. I love to hear your comments!