Ever since I was a little girl, the story of Baby Jesus' birth has been my absolute favorite part of the Bible. When I was small, my grandma would tell me the story, and I would act it out. I was always Mary, because she got to be pregnant and have Baby Jesus. We even had a name for the donkey that Mary had to ride on to Bethlehem (Clippity-Clop). When I would have nightmares, my mom would always tell me the story of Baby Jesus, and it always helped me not to be afraid anymore--something I find myself still doing to this today! Plus, as a family, on Christmas day we always did a whole "production" of the Christmas story (of course, I got to be Mary in this one too!)
All this to say that I love Christmas. It is so easy, though, for me to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of everything that I think I have to do--finding the perfect presents for everyone, getting food cooked just right, and visiting everyone. Even the fun things about Christmas--the lights, music, and time with friends and family can get overwhelming. I'm determined, though, to remember and focus on the true reason for the season-the birth of Jesus. I love Christmas for this reason alone--to celebrate the birth of my Savior--the ultimate Gift that God gave to us.
This year is a bittersweet one for me--I'm still excited for all that comes with Christmas, but I often find myself thinking about my baby boy, who should have been a month old on Christmas day. As I was enjoying our Christmas Eve service tonight, I found myself tearing up, thinking about what would have been. We were surrounded by kids, as well as one that was so sweetly singing along to the Christmas carols right behind us. Our pastor spoke about the hope, peace, joy, and love that this Advent (the coming of Christ) season brings. I'm so glad that have hope for future children, as well as a peace deep in my heart that my little guy is in such a better place, but it is still hard. So I'm chosing to enjoy this Christmas, and just like when I was little and had a nightmare, which is what losing Jonathan feels like, I will remind myself of Jesus and the story of Him coming to earth for me.
I pray that you and your family have a wonderful Christmas--the fun parts, as well as the truly important part--Jesus!