Christmas ReflectionsPosted: December 24, 2009
I don’t know about you, but I love the exercise of crafting the annual Christmas letter: reflecting on the year just past, and wondering what the coming year will bring. Tears come to my eyes as I pondered all that happened in our lives this year. In fact, tears came readily to my eyes all year long…
Tears of frustration. Frustration upon learning that my Certain Little Someone had multiple life-threatening food allergies and there was nothing we could do about it except protect him from the danger to the best of our ability. Frustration because I could not feed him that. Or that. Or that. Frustration because his eczema made him scratch until he bled. Frustration because, even at 8 months, he couldn’t sleep through the night because of the itch.
Then there were the tears of self-pity: self-pity because I was the only one in my circle who had these problems, or so I thought. Self-pity because everyone else could feed their children whatever they wanted but I had to feed mine things like coconut milk yogurt and farinata, things no one else had ever heard of. Self-pity because no one understood what I was going through.
And yes, I admit, there were tears of doubt. No, I never doubted God’s existence or His sovereignty. In fact, it was my steady belief in His sovereignty that made me doubt His goodness, His love, His wisdom. How could He allow these things to happen to my family?
But then came the tears of joy. Joy as my Certain Little Someon took his first steps, said his first words, celebrated his first birthday. Joy as he laughed the carefree laugh of a toddler exploring his world and finding it fun and exciting.
Tears of gratefulness, too. Grateful that God would send me His love through the caring words and deeds of family, friends, physicians and even perfect strangers. Grateful that He provided for each and every need, and even many wants. Grateful that, when I finally let my burdens go, He took them on His shoulders and carried them for me. Grateful that there are no more tears of frustration as I think on this year…
Only tears of gratitude and love. What an amazing God we serve, that He comes to us and meets our needs where we are, even if it’s in a dirty rotten place of frustration, self-pity and doubt. Remember the baby in the manger … in the stable? That was God.
I wish you the Merriest Christmas Ever: may you rejoice, even if through tears!