OUR CHRISTMAS TREE
Our Christmas tree is up!
I always like our Christmas tree, this year it takes on a special meaning.
Every time I go to see my oncologist I get a special bracelet. It has my name, birthday and other important information on it. Before I am to get any treatment the nurses match my bracelet with their orders.
After a few visits it became clear I was going to keep getting these bracelets. It seemed a waste to simply throw them away once I left the office. I came up with the idea of using them to make a chain to decorate our Christmas tree. There are 41 loops, representing 41 office visits since May! If you are into math you quickly realize that is more than one visit per week. I was busy when my treatment first started. Now we are down to one visit per week.
As I sit in my chair and look at our Christmas tree I am amazed and thankful for the way God has helped me navigate those 41 loops. It has not been easy. Nancy is nothing short of amazing. We look at the tree and laugh. Last year at this time those 41 loops were the furthest thing from our minds…and yet God has met us in the midst of chaos in powerful ways. By the time we take down the tree there will be another five or six loops to the chain. I can’t wait to see our tree next year, there will be close to 100 loops!
Nancy loves this time of year. Our home has six full Nativity scenes out on display. I am told there are more in storage. Apparently we need a larger home in order to display them all. Along with the full Nativity scenes there are random Mary and Joseph images throughout the house. Just when I think I have seen them all another one pops up.
I give her a hard time about all the Nativity scenes but they are a nice reminder of what this season is all about.
A SACRED STORY
There is something sacred and humbling about the Christmas story.
Mary and Joseph boldly stepping out in faith to follow the words of the angel which appeared to each of them. Shepherds interrupted while at work taking the step to go and search out this special family. Magi trusting a star to lead them over long distances so they too can see this special child. The Son of God, taking on human form, born in a manger. Abba Father so deeply in love with His creation that He is willing to send Jesus to redeem and restore relationship.
As we enter Advent it does us well to spend time reflecting on this most sacred of stories.
If Christmas is about more than gifts, food and time off of work then we would be wise to reflect on each of the people within this story and ask what Abba Father may be seeking to teach us through their example.
- What are we to learn from the faithfulness and obedience of Mary & Joseph?
- What can we take to heart as we read of the Shepherds leaving work to meet this special child born in a manger?
- Is there a lesson found within the Magi’s persistence and generous gifts?
- What does it mean for us today that Abba Father loved his creation to the point of sending Jesus?
In the blink of an eye we will be celebrating New Years. Before this most sacred of seasons passes you by for yet another year take a moment and reflect on what it truly means for you and your family.
May Christmas 2016 be a year when the grace, love and mercy of Abba Father break through the clouds and chaos of this crazy world and grant you peace.
God is Good All the Time…All the Time God is Good