Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Hope and Change
1. O come, Thou Day-Spring, come and cheer
Our spirits by Thine advent here
Disperse the gloomy clouds of night
And death's dark shadows put to flight.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel
This verse from one of my favorite carols struck me differently this year. It jumped out at me just a day or two after hearing about the shooting in Newtown, CT and again after learning of the firefighters that lost their lives in an ambush set for them in Webster, NY. How appropriate that God would remind me that Emmanuel means "God is with us".
This Christmas, though my heart is broken for the grieving in Connecticut and New York, it is also filled with gratitude and hope because God is with us. " For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace." (Isaiah 9:6)
Our hope for change doesn't sit in the Oval office, it was born in a barn and slept in a feed trough 2000 years ago (maybe this bit of knowledge means a little more to a farm girl...).
Emmanuel. God is With Us. Still, it seems that some of us are waiting for Emmanuel to be with us. He is With us, he lives in us and is for us but we keep waiting on something or somebody to change what's broken.
2. You should have seen Bryce loading out the car on Christmas morning in the freezing, soaking rain. By the time Bennett and I got into the toasty car and settled into our heated seats Bryce was soaked to the skin. Sometimes, I think it stinks to be the Dad of a family. Especially when the well breaks on the coldest day of the year or the plumbing backs up at the least convenient time or the new washer you just had to have weighs 500 LBS and he has to call a friend just to help him get it in the laundry room. Or when you have a migraine at 2 AM and he goes to wal-mart for your Tylenol and ice pack. Bryce has earned his status in our family as mine and Bennett's hero and it has nothing to do with his occupation. Just about the time I get really pissed at him for farting and blaming it on the dog or belching in public (basically, being a dude...) he turns around and reminds me why it rocks to be married to a dude. Most of the time. Actual quote: "loading the car don't bother me. I don't want you out in it and I don't want Bennett out in it." Chivalry by definition. I guess I'll keep him.
3. Bennett had an awesome Christmas, even though we didn't get to see his aunts or cousins. It just didn't work out. We did, however, spend the night with the other side of the family and had a rockin' time. This weekend I think Bryce and I will be organizing and making more space in his room for all the toys. So, a special "Merry Christmas" to Pop, Nan, Aunt Jen, Aunt Crys and cousins A,L, and Cooper. We are sorry we missed you, we hope you had an awesome Christmas and we LOVE our presents. Thank y'all so much!
4. Back up on my soap box for a minute. Really, ladies? Trashing our husbands on Facebook? That's awful! Nobody is naive enough to actually think that any of our husbands are perfect. As wonderful as mine is, he still has his faults. (see above...the "farting" thing...) But here's something God spoke specifically to my heart. We are never more attractive to our husbands than when we reflect Christ's image and clothe ourselves with the love and grace that covers imperfection. It's maybe the hardest thing I've ever had to change about myself, not raking him over the coals when he hurts me, but hear me when I say it is so worth it.
That's all. Also, the more positive we are about things that other people like to gripe about the more it irritates the Negative Nellies in our lives. So there's that.
5. So here's something embarrassing to me. I had started running again a couple months ago and realized that the exercise I used to dread has turned in to a huge positive part of my day. I love it. I decided that I would train (SLOWLY) for a half-marathon in December of 2013. I wasn't really going to say too much about it, it sounds like bragging and there's always the chance that A. I could injure myself B. I may find that I just can't hack it or C. I'm fooling myself by thinking I have that much time to spend on running. But after a chat with Bryce's old trainer, I decided that the accountability may be a good motivator. Now that I've said something, I gotta put my money where my mouth is. So I'll sign up and, even if I have to walk half of it, I'll finish 13.1 miles in December. I'm really hoping I don't regret saying something.
6. I just realized I'm a little bit secretly superstitious about next year being 2013. I know it's really dumb, that's why I'm secretive about being superstitious.
7. This Christmas I realized that even though Whitney has basically been family for a couple years now, next fall it will be official. I'm excited about having a new sister, especially one as sweet as she is. Good choice, Trevor.
8. What a week. I'm exhausted. Merry Christmas!