Wednesday, December 26, 2012


It's the day after Christmas. 

I was able to sleep in a little this morning. Hubs had already gone to work.  When I went in the kitchen I saw the signs of what he had for breakfast- pie crumbs.  It made me smile. I got my coffee and called him just to say, "Good morning." 

Daughter was still asleep.  I quietly opened her door to let out the dog, Jessie.  She went outside and did what she needed to do and ran back inside.  It's cold and windy today.  A cold front rolled in last night.

I came inside and turned on the tree, along with the little tabletop tree with my White House Christmas ornaments.  Then I sat down, turned on the TV and sipped my coffee, thinking about the day.  I'm planning to go to a few stores for after Christmas bargains later.

Some of the remnants of Christmas still sit in the living room. There are gifts to put away and a tiny Reese's cup wrapper I forgot to throw away.

Another day after Christmas.

It has been almost two weeks since I heard the news of Newtown.  Since then I've written and re-written post after post.  I kept wanting to say something, write something, do something.  I kept thinking of the mothers who were planning funerals while I was buying Christmas gifts.  There is something about such evil at Christmas that has made it so much more troubling. 
Time after time I kept staring at the laptop trying to write and the words just wouldn't come. 
Then Sunday night I was driving home from one last shopping trip when a familiar song by Michael W. Smith  played.  It expressed what I think a lot of us have been feeling this Christmas season.  It left me in tears as I drove in the dark.

Welcome To Our World

Tears are falling, hearts are breaking
How we need to hear from God
You've been promised, we've been waiting
Welcome Holy Child
Welcome Holy Child

Hope that You don't mind our manger
How I wish we would have known
But long awaited Holy Stranger
Make Yourself at home
Please make Yourself at home

Bring Your peace into our violence
Bid our hungry souls be filled
World now breaking Heaven's silence
Welcome to our world
Welcome to our world

Fragile finger sent to heal us
Tender brow prepared for them
Tiny heart whose blood will save us
Unto us is born
Unto us is born

So wrap our injured flesh around You
Breathe our air and walk our sod
Rob our sin and make us holy
Perfect Son of God
Perfect Son of God

Welcome to our world

It is at Christmas that we talk about peace.  We declare it on Christmas cards and sing about it in church.  Newtown was a reminder that we still long for peace. It is when the routines of our lives are interrupted with evil that we realize how much we need to hear from God.

According to the calendar, Christmas is over. Today is the day people begin to take down their decorations.  Some will leave them up until New Year's Day.  We'll pack up our ornaments and the nativity.  We'll climb on the roof to take down all of the lights. One evening I'll be handing Hubs all the boxes as he puts them away in the attic.

Pretty soon the stores will begin new displays for Valentine's Day. Santas will be replaced with pink hearts and red candy boxes.  Within weeks you will barely see any sign of Christmas in our homes or in the stores. 

My mother's heart hurts for the mother in Newtown who didn't get to watch her child open Christmas gifts yesterday.  For her, it isn't just the day after Christmas. It is the week after a funeral.  Today is  another day she has to find the strength to put one foot in front of the other. Tonight is another night she can't read Green Eggs and Ham one more time.

So I ask God to heal her heart, to wrap His arms around her and help her get out of bed every morning. Help her when the birthdays come and go, when she smells play dough and cries, when she sees a child in a store that is the age her child would have been.

I ask God to teach me something.  Teach me to slow down, to hug my child more, to love my husband more, to care for my friends more.

That Holy night when the angels declared the birth of Jesus to the shepherds was the beginning of the message of Christmas.  It's a message that has been celebrated for thousands of years, a message of peace and hope that only Jesus Christ can bring to our hearts. 

Our broken, burdened hearts.

I pray for Newtown as they heal.  I pray that God will give them peace.

And that, even though the calendar says Christmas has come and gone, that all of us will keep the message of Christmas in our hearts long after the last string of lights is packed away.

 "And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."  Philippians 4: 7  



Horse Lady said...

You said it well my compassionate friend.

Horse Lady said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
A Reader's Life said...

Very nice post. It's what I would have said, but you said it better.
Found your blog a couple of days ago and enjoyed it. (So now it's almost 2 a.m. and I'm still reading the old entries.) Must sleep now . . . brain getting fuzzy . . .

Nancy said...

You did a great job putting your feelings into words. I haven't been able to express it. This helped.

The Bug said...

Well said. Amy Grant sings that on one of her Christmas albums - it's one of my favorites.