It’s Christmas Eve!

As I sit in the warm glow of our Christmas tree, I’m reminded of Christmases past. Childhood times where I waited, with my sister, in anticipation of opening presents and scoping out the tree while we waited for our parents to wake up. Sad times where there was an empty seat at the table and a loved one still missed.

The last two years have been hard on so many people who have lost loved ones or jobs. I admit it’s been mentally difficult to endure for me even though I haven’t lost as much as others.

I’ve been looking forward to this Christmas because it’s a joy to see my young adult daughter still delight in the wonder of Christmas. She loves to decorate and bake for Christmas. She loves dressing up to take Christmas pictures with her boyfriend and going out on Christmas Eve to see all the extravagant house lights in our area. I know that one day she’ll have a home of her own and she’ll go all out with her decorations as her way of enjoying the season.

As I continue to reflect on the meaning of Christmas, there’s one thing I anticipate more than all the gifts under the tree or the feast on the table. It’s the gift of Jesus and his eventual return. The imperfect world we live in, filled with sin, division, hatred, and selfishness will meet our perfect savior who will make everything new. No more sickness, death, and sadness for those that have received his gift of redemption. Peace and joy will reign and we will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

As I watch the world around me spiral further out of control, I can rest in the fact that He is in control of it all and has a plan for us all. Even though I get frustrated at times because I can’t see where I fit in to His plan, I know He’s still working everything out in his perfect time and I am at peace.

I pray that you, too, have peace in Jesus. Merry CHRISTmas!

Random Ornaments

I find it ironic that I’m posting about Christmas ornaments on Thanksgiving day (ok, ok, I didn’t actually get this up until Friday). As I watched my daughter decorate our tree yesterday, I kept thinking about the displays you see in stores or at homes fit for magazines. The ornaments all match a specific theme and are neatly placed on the tree. Our tree, however, is filled with random ornaments.
Some ornaments were purchased, some gifts, others are collectibles from past years. A few are from nicer stores, some from dollar stores, and then there’s the hand-made ones from the kids. They all make up a tree that can tell a story about our lives and our family.
I was thinking about how all those random ornaments mirror real life. We are all from different backgrounds and yet we can still come together to make something beautiful. I think about how Jesus called people from random backgrounds into His ministry to redeem the world. How tax collectors, fishermen, and other sinners helped to lead the way for the rest of us. I’m thankful for the random people God chose to speak into my life and show my His way.

Some of my random ornaments:

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