Oh Holy Night

Let’s go on a journey of looking at the manger and take time to consider and ponder the events of the night. Within the moments is an intimate, personal experience for each of us; an opportunity to gaze into the eyes of the baby King and to those of His momma. As we celebrate the birth of Jesus, the beauty and innocence of imagining an encounter with that heavenly baby boy, brings joy and peace beyond description.

As moms, we want things around the holidays to be perfect, from the cinnamon rolls to the decorations! But I have learned that what I remember is not how perfect the dinner or the house was, but rather the moments with those I love most. Beyond the “Martha” syndrome lies an inward posture of rest and peace that finds contentment in the done, that what has been done is enough. And this season is about that very thing—remembering that what He has done is enough!! Mary understood this better than anyone in scripture. She learned the art of “being” and shows us that it’s possible to choose Him in every season of life.

I am not good at many things.  I didn’t seem to show up on the right day the Lord handed out talent.  But one thing I got a double dose of was a deep desire to know each one of my children to the very deepest part of their being and love them fiercely.  I can tell what kind of day Madi has had from a 5 second glance across a crowded gym.  I know how Tanner is doing by the height of his grin.  When Jake calls, I know where his heart is by the way he inhales before saying hello.  But that’s what mom’s do, right?

I realized recently how much time has escaped me.  With Tanner now married and a father himself and Jake and Madi both teenagers, I was overwhelmed with disbelief that we have actually lived every minute of their lives and it now seems like only a few short breaths.

I can’t help wondering how Mary must have felt.  From the moment that the angel announced that she would have a son, she knew that time would escape her.  Her precious baby whom she cared for, taught how to walk, taught how to talk, and tucked in at night…her son who she threw the ball to, had clear the table, and watched as he walked off to school…the young man who she saw turn water to wine, silence the learned and religious and raise the dead…her son, her God, her Savior was with her on borrowed time.  I wonder how she felt when she heard He had been arrested.  What was she thinking as she watched the man He had become, the son that she loved, raised and worshipped be questioned and tortured?

We know she was there.  As difficult as it must have been for her to watch, could she have been anywhere else?  She was there the moment He drew his first breath and she would be there when He drew his last.  Many of those who had followed him, who loved Him, were there.  But she was His momma; there was nowhere else on the planet she would be but there, at His feet.  When He was weak and hurting, He could find her.  He could see the love in her eyes.

I for one will take a lesson from Mary this Christmas season.  I will resist the urge to make gatherings “perfect” and in so doing, miss the gathering myself all together.  I will not allow my thoughts to revert to the relationships that are painful, the people that I miss or the presents I didn’t buy.  I will remember that “there is no tomorrow”.  There is only this moment.

I will watch the glow in my family’s eyes as they experience the wonder of His majesty.  I will watch for those special moments to etch in my memory as they talk, laugh and cry together.  I will remember that we are on borrowed time.  And they will be able to find me, in this moment, and see the love in my eyes.  Where else on the planet would I be?

Linger by the manger.  Encounter the infant King.  And as the sun rises in the morning, let’s begin the journey to an encounter with Him that will set us free and allow us to walk changed into His callings for our future.

Merry Christmas!!

Buy Candy’s book Rescue here! 

Candy GibbsYou can swim confidently into the murky waters of parenting teens! Rescue offers wisdom, encouragement, and practical applications. Working with a group of young “Lifeguards” throughout the book, Candy Gibbs gives struggling parents the life preservers they need to rescue teens from a drowning culture. With Biblical insights and Candy’s own creative techniques, Rescue is the “Noah’s Ark” of parenting books, ensuring that today’s teens will carry on a legacy of godliness to generations to come. Find out more!

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