Saturday, December 7, 2013

Stripped Away

I woke up at 4 a.m. and lay in bed thinking for a bit before I got up. I feel like I'm on a runaway train and it's hard to believe that Christmas is just 18 days away.  It doesn't feel like Christmas here.

► The tree is looking a bit bare since we didn't put all the ornaments on.
► There are no other decorations around.
► My walls are bare now that I've taken down the pictures.
► No Christmas cookies have been made
► All of the "Christmas" activity is gone.
► There are no presents bought and will be very few this year as things are tight.

As I lay there I was thinking, "This stinks!"

However, as I lay there feeling full of self-pity, the Lord reminded of something I wrote in my book, One Clear, Still Night.  Christmas is not about the decorations, or the packages, or the sparkling lights.  Christmas is about one solitary gift that changed the world.  It was given without pomp and circumstance, in poverty, and in the dark.

All the trappings are stripped away this year and I'm left with what?  The Gift.  The one thing that makes my life have meaning.  The only reason that I should rejoice.

And that is what Christmas is about, my friends.  That is why even with a daunting task in front of me, and multiple, huge changes taking place all at once, and feeling very alone, I can have joy and peace.

This stripped away Christmas leaves me with one thing - Christ alone.

And that is the one thing that keeps me moving forward, step by step, with a heart full of joy.