My explanation of the first few weeks of Advent 2012 would probably be much like everyone else’s: I’m busy and I don’t feel like I’m “reflecting” or “waiting expectantly” for the Lord at all. This fall has required lots of time-management, work, and bravery, but it has been very good. I am still a little bit tired and worn out from all of that. (When you are in high school or college and work really hard all semester, you come home and your mommy makes you food and takes care of your home. Not so for grown-ups like me.) And now, after teaching, tests, sharing about hard things, countless piano lessons, four recitals, bible studies, book clubs, and packaging up lots of venison, I’m finally on Christmas break. By some miracle, Aaron has had half the normal amount of stuff to do this week. He’s waiting on results for something… I don’t totally get why this happened now, but it means we’re both home a lot, and we spend our time listening to carols, enjoying the fireplace, and drinking lots of hot cocoa stirred with candy canes. This is fun!
Receiving Christmas cards in the mail is one of my favorite parts of the holiday preparations. This year I found adorable mini-clothespins at a craft store, so we’re keeping a card-line. It’s so special to see these friends and family on our mantel! Mailing Christmas cards seems like a throw-back, a trend of days gone by, but we’re still hanging on to this tradition. Communication and relationships are so much more important than the technology we usually use to facilitate them. Sometimes sharing something tangible is a special way to express your well-wishes and encouragement to others – and I’m glad I’m not the only person who thinks this way! (My friend Hannah said it well: “Luckily, I went to a college attended by many people (most of them ladies – let’s be real here) who still practice the art of letter writing.”)
This week’s blizzard required some significant snow-removal efforts on our driveway. As I looked out the window from my cushy perch in the house, I snapped this shot, and it occurred to me that Aaron was not only clearing the snow from around my car, he was also sweeping it off the top. He is a good man. Also, I’m really excited about these winter-wonderland surroundings!
Our Christmas travel plans are probably augmented because of all this snow, but it’s hard to complain when we are inside and cozy by the fire.
It feels only fair to admit that I’ve had an outline for a post called “Advent is for those who fail” in my folder for almost three weeks. At this point, I’m pretty sure I won’t actually sit down and finish it before Christmas. The basic point is that those who fail should use Advent to look forward in hope to Christ, who unfailingly fulfills all promises. This is great news, especially for people who have a hard time sitting down and finishing projects, even when they are on a break.
For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God. – 2 Corinthians 1:20, niv.
And in case we missed you in the “real mail” – Merry Christmas!