Monday, December 31, 2012

As white as snow

So the end of 2012 is near and as I sit reflecting I am able to watch the beautiful snow fall. That may not be very exciting in some areas, but here in southern BC snow is a rarity....and the big beautiful flakes make me think ""Come now, let's settle this," says the LORD. "Though your sins are like scarlet, I will make them as white as snow. Isaiah 1:18" Somehow it seems fitting that on the eve of the day we traditionally think of as a new beginning, God would send this (anyday) we can ask and our sins will no longer be scarlet, they will be forgiven and we once again as pure as snow....this a promise that gives us hope!

As I watch the flakes drop I am aware....

I am aware of their delicate beauty. I am aware that the first few that fall, as intricate and unique as they are, must sacrifice their shape as they hit the ground melting. I am aware that  as more follow, they slowly start to build on one another until the white is seen and the depth increases, the trees start to grow heavy and the ground changes color. I am aware if it were not for those first flakes preparing the surface the beauty of those that follow would not have a place to rest and accumulate.

I am aware that without that first sacrifice, we would miss the beauty completely. I pray I will not forget that this coming year.

Monday, December 24, 2012

One more sleep....

It is Christmas Eve...a much quieter and different one than that of Christmas past. I wondered if I would be ready but with the presents wrapped, the house tidy and the pies baking I realize that the new normal of Christmas is peaceful.

No longer do I need to get the tree ready for Santa, no longer do I have small excited children to dress for church and try to settle into bed, no longer do I see 2am on the clock and wonder when I will go to bed....the children are grown and it seems hard to believe it went by so quickly...and so I sit here quietly reflecting on the Christmas of the past and look toward the Christmas of the future.

I will admit that this is not how I pictured Christmas eve, I miss the family and the chaos...but I relish in the ability to quietly reflect on why we celebrate, on the hope that is Christmas, the gift that so many miss. I re-read the Christmas story and am reminded that before Jesus came, God seemed distant...accessible only to the high priest. His people doubted their salvation as they worried about the sacrifices they made...were they enough, would God be pleased?

And then Christ was born, fulfilling the the prophecy of Isaiah... born to a frightened young mother far from home....his life in danger before it much more than a simple birth in a stable...

And I am reminded that Christ is hope—to the person out of work, to the person suffering depression, to the struggling single mother, to the dying matter what you are facing as you push through the life's disappointments, if you have Jesus, you have hope.... not a false hope, a real hope. When Christ died and rose, our hope in him became solid and it is real.

Christmas is a renewal of that hope. It reconfirms it for us that regardless of our circumstance, Jesus is indeed the fulfillment of our hope. God settled it for us long ago, we need not doubt...only remember that we always have hope.

For unto us a child is born,
Unto us a Son is given;
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor,
Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Isaiah 9:6

Monday, December 17, 2012

Parental Control?

I was told that parenting would not get easier as the kids got older....I was ready for that.

I didn't however know it would get harder...I was not prepared for the time when simply holding my baby tight would provide the comfort to ease any pain my child was feeling.

I was ready for them to gain independence but was not prepared for the helplessness that would accompany having to stand by and watch as life handed them grown up problems and disappointments.

I looked forward to them becoming adults but find myself wishing they were once again little so I could once again protect them. 

As I write this I am obviously feeling melancholy, at odds with myself and my ability to be supportive without being controlling...what I am learning is that after 17 years of single parenting I am still not comfortable with not having some level of control...darn, I though I was past that particular flaw!

All this to say that I need to focus on God...the one who provides comfort...the one who protects....the one who is in control...the one I must depend on.

"Have you not known? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth.  He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable. 
He gives power to the faint, 
and to him who has no might he increases strength'"~Isaiah 40:28-29

"For I, the Lord your God, hold your right hand; it is I who say to you, “Fear not, I am the one who helps you.”  ~Isaiah 41:13

"It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.”~Deuteronomy 31:8

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Peace & Hope

How is that 2 months have past?? I am sorry for my neglect....I have written in my head but alas, that is not good enough for it is then called 'thinking'.

Life continues to move at a very fast pace and there are many things I could write about....grandson, adult children, work and more...these are the things that take my time and for them I am grateful. Gratitude diaries seem to be very popular these days and I love the idea...*sigh*...but I don't think I shall do that today.

With Christmas around the corner, recipes and the very successful Pinterest are another way of filling our time (thank goodness I do not enjoy baking or I may be hooked). Christmas...this time of year is always full of conflicting emotions. I LOVE Christmas....the decor, the lights, the story of a saviour's birth, gingerbread cookies and reading under the tree... *happy sigh*....there are so many great things about Christmas to blog about.

The other side is the craziness of working retail, people who are overwhelmed and grumpy, financial strain as we try to 'keep up with the Jones', those who suffer depression for a myriad of reasons, the first Christmas without a loved one....*sigh*....I know so many who are suffering this Christmas

With this in mind I endeavour to sensitive to those who suffer, I will try to not covet the 'things' that society says I should have, I will love those that God has put in my life and I will remember that the true meaning of Christmas...hope....peace...

For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given;
and the government shall be upon his shoulder,
and his name shall be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Isaiah 9:6