A Blessed Christmas Indeed

Well, it's almost midnight. Christmas 2005 is almost over.

It's been a wonderful day. Both Lowell and I agree that it's been our best Christmas together.

We just had a quiet day at home with just Lowell, myself and our two little ones.

I can't put a finger on what it was, exactly, that made it so special. Part of it was the quality family time. Part of it was the relaxed pace of the day.

I think, though, that the biggest part was how, more than any other Christmas I remember before, it was about Jesus. His name came up in all of our conversation several times throughout the day.

Having little ones has made Lowell and I much more conscious about the kinds of traditions we're establishing as a family. We had decided early in our marriage that even though Santa was part of my Christmases growing up (he wasn't a part of Lowell's), that we wouldn't teach our girls about the jolly old elf who brings presents to good girls and boys. Our reasons why could encompass a blog in and of itself, but in a nutshell, it's because it's hard enough to keep our focus on our Saviour without introducing a fictional gift-giving distraction who has the God-like ability to keep tabs on who's naughty or nice.

The girls opened up a few small gifts while breakfast was cooking (ginormous, overgrown, over-risen, but wonderully tasty pullaparts). Then before breakfast, we donned our 'Jesus' birthday hats', sang 'Happy Birthday' to Jesus, blew out candles on the pull-apart cake and listened to Lowell read the Christmas story. I was so blessed to hear how, even amidst the girls' excitement about gifts, the conversation would roll back to Jesus Himself. Tasia was sharing her theories about where Heaven was and Katiana asking for 'More Jesus?' which meant she wanted us to sing 'Happy Birthday' to Him again.....and again...and again Hearing her little baby self speak His name so clearly made Mommy a little teary-eyed. I know she doesn't really know Him yet, or understand the implications of what she's asking, but I pray with all my heart that one day that "More Jesus?" becomes her life's cry.

She even learned the ASL sign for 'Jesus' today. Somehow seeing those tiny little hands miming the nail scars in His made the significance of this day that much more real. We celebrate the Babe in the manger, but over the manger lies the shadow of the Cross.

Thank You Father for sending Your only Son. Thank You Jesus for coming. For sacrificing everything so that I can be part of Your family. So that I can experience the Wholeness that You bring to every aspect of my life, my family, my life.

Happy Birthday Jesus.


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