It's Christmas Eve.
The girls are tucked into bed.
We have been bustling around for the last week reacquainting ourselves with dear souls. It is a good problem to be in the predicament to try to fit in all the people we love.
But it wears me down, sometimes.
Christmas is crazy. Really. How could anyone disagree? A "normal" Christmas is crazy enough, but this is our second year of having Christmas on the road, and it's even more difficult.
This last week has hardly felt like Christmas to me at all. I'm not in my space with my creature comforts and my familiar routine. I thrive on routine and the familiar, so I'm learning to embrace the changes that put their finger on my weak spots and press down just to make a point.
But amidst all of the craziness and changes and mayhem, Christmas is really pretty simple. Into a land where the Romans made terror and fear a part of everyday life for the Jewish people, the long-awaited Messiah entered in.... and the world has never been the same.
I posted this poem last Christmas and I felt I needed to again.
It cuts right to the chase of who I am and where I live.
God with us.
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