This has been a week. A long and hard week as a 2 year old boy in our church passed away. We were at his family’s house cleaning and helping out, when I looked out the window and noticed a man from church on the roof. He was putting up Christmas lights on their house. It touched my heart as I watched him. It was freezing outside, probably ten degrees and he was out there willingly serving so the family could come home to some lights on their house. After losing a light in their family so unexpectedly at this time of year that is supposed to be a time of cheer, lightheartedness and fun, they would be coming home to a bit of darkness. But I wanted to think as they got home to their home, their sanctuary, their safe place, they would see the lights and be reminded of the light of Christ. The baby who was born into this world to bring light. A light that would never be dimmed or faded with the passage of time.
Wednesday, December 17, 2014
When Blake and I first started dating, he called me “dear”. It was almost a deal breaker because what 21 year old calls his girlfriend “dear”? I always that was an old person term of endearment. Each time he called me “dear”, I would inwardly cringe. Finally, I got up the gumption to tell him that “dear” couldn’t be our word because it was old. He was just find with it and we started calling each other “honey” instead. (This is much before the new term “babe” had entered the endearment category.) We have continued to call each other “honey” throughout the last 12.5 years of marriage. I love the sweetness of that name. It is just fun and light and sweet. I would never want to switch, just like I would never want to switch him. We are going to be marking our 13th first date anniversary January 30th. Can’t believe it has been that long since we met and just fell in love at first sight pretty much. It was so easy to skip the whole friend thing and go right to the dating/fiancée/marriage thing. It was second nature. We were married after knowing each other for six months. Marrying Blake was the easiest thing I have ever done. When you know, you know. And I am so happy I knew.
Me and my love
Monday, December 15, 2014
I was teaching a song to a group of 30 children in church the other day when I had a thought. A thought that I hoped would gather their attention and their thoughts on the importance of the birth of Jesus Christ. I asked them how many years ago Jesus was born. They told me “2,000 years!” excitedly. Then I asked them if other people were born 2,000 years ago. They said “Yes”. Then I asked them why we don’t celebrate all those birthdays. And I got some interesting responses. “Because Jesus is so important.” “Because he died for us.” “Because he loves us.” My last question to the kids was, ”Will we celebrate Him in 2,000 years, 4,000 years, forever.” And they said we would. That we would truly celebrate Him forever. It was a sweet experience. Even now, it has me thinking of the greatest birthday party we hold every year. In honor of a sweet baby, born in a stable.
I know there are a lot of doubters out there. People who don’t believe in God or Jesus or creation. But I don’t have any doubt that there was a baby born. A baby who would grow to be a child to a teenager to an adult. That this person would be Jesus. That he would live a life worthy of emulation. The only life worthy of complete emulation. That He would perform miracles, die for us, live for us, and provide teachings for us to live a perfect life or as perfect as we try. That he would stir up the world in such a way that 2,014 years later, there would still be controversy. There would still be a great desire for people to find Jesus Christ and to make a spot for Him in their lives.
This time of year is sweet. A sweet reminder of love. Of the pure love of Christ, the One who would change lives and soften hearts. Why do people feel so happy this time of year? Why do we reach out to others, donate money, donate time and feel the happiness we do? It is because of Jesus Christ. Because when we give, we are able to feel the joy of the One who has given us everything. He has given us a chance to change, to improve and to feel a perfect love from One who sacrificed His whole life for us. And willingly. My goal this year and every year is to make every day like Christmas. I know that's cheesy. But I also know that every day we serve others brings us closer to Jesus Christ. And that is one of the greatest gifts that we can receive.