During Advent the Church celebrates the messianic works of the Hebrew prophets, especially that of the prophet Isaiah. Advent emphasizes as well the promise of the second coming of the Messiah in kingly triumph.
I put my Klan books away. Far away. Under my reading chair where I can’t see them. I need a break. A rest. Reading about the worst of the past — of my past — is grueling. It’s like eating vitamins instead of food–good for you, but hard to swallow. Sometimes you choke and urp. And sometimes you need actual food that tastes good and satisfies more than your rudimentary needs.
We decorated for Christmas this weekend–our usual tradition on the weekend after Thanksgiving. Being IN*Js, Grant and I avoid the bustling Black Friday shopping with great diligence. Anything’s better than competing for plastic junk we don’t want for a price we can’t afford next to people we don’t know or like.
The kids are old enough now to really pitch in with the decorating, and they were nuts about it. After I wrestled with the lights all morning, I was the designated unwrapper of all ornaments. The job requires care and patience, but it allows for lengthy story-telling.
“Oh boys, look! These are the shoes you wore home from the hospital. Look how tiny your feet were!”
“See this one? This is a little girl hugging an angel. We got this the Christmas after your sister, Elise was born because she’s in Heaven with Jesus.”
“Here’s Cricket! . . . Just a minute, I’ll find Sugar and Mike.”
“Be careful now, Gramma Lewis painted this one!”
“This ornament was from Grandma Kaminski’s childhood. It’s very old.”
“Save the little Santas for Daddy. He likes to put those on the tree.”
“This one looks just like the church where Mommy and Daddy were married. Isn’t it pretty?”
You know how it goes. Your ornament unwrapping is the same as ours. It’s a day heavy with sentiment, where you have to or you get to look your past square in the eyes.
And it’s been a big year. A big emotional and healing year. I started it praying for Shalom for myself, and I end it now feeling it.
I’m very thankful, and I need to talk about it. I still don’t know how. I don’t have an blog-plan in mind like I usually do when I start a series. But I’m going to talk about it. Whatever IT is. During Advent–that season which we never dared celebrate in my previous life and which now is my great blessing to relish.
I hope you’ll join me. I don’t even know where we’ll end up.