We are home for Christmas. These past few days have been so full.
Full of friends and their warm openness to receive us back. Hugs and squeezes. Talking fast to get it all in.
Full of cuddles with new babies. Quiet moments to study the intricacies of their faces - the wrinkles on their pinky-finger knuckles, and the shape of the their noses.
Full of the generosity of living in another's house and having a place to call home.
Full of spicy flavours of favorite curries and peanut sauces. Schmaunt Kuchen and chocolate and peppermint.
Full of the awareness of how empty we are without the offering...
For us who have only known approximate fathers
and mothers manque, this child is a surprise:
a sudden coming true of all we hoped
might happen. Hoarded hopes fed by prophecies,
old sermons and song fragments, now cry
coo and gurgle in the cradle, a babbling
proto-language which as soon as it gets
a tongue (and we, of course, grow open ears)
will say the big nouns: joy, glory, peace;
and live the best verbs: love, forgive, save.
Along with the swaddling clothes the words are washed
of every soiling sentiment, scrubbed clean of
all failed promises, then hung in the world's
backyard dazzling white, billowing gospel.
Eugene H. Peterson
Peace to you all tonight.