Thanksgiving week was fabulous! I traveled up to Oklahoma and spent time with beloved family and friends. I also got to spend some time with Trevor and his girlfriend Kalyn. Have you ever been around a young couple in love? It’s pretty amazing, sweet, adorable. It’s also a little disconcerting to see your little boy dote on another woman but I’ll save that for another blog entry :)
I’ve been reflecting on the idea of first love. Oh how sweet it is. I’ve also started studying The Greatest Gift by Ann Voskamp again this Advent season. In comparing the two, I’m struck by the idea it behooves us to revisit those sweet feelings of first love. Seeing Trevor and Kalyn together made me love James all the more. Why? Because I remembered our young love…I remembered all the reasons I fell in love. I set aside the busyness and chaos of day to day and enjoyed James and our relationship.
Same goes for Advent. Advent is simply the period beginning four Sundays before Christmas, observed in preparation of the coming of Christ into the world. Taking time out to reflect, to remember during Advent makes me love Jesus all the more. But this blog is all about keeping it real so let me continue…
I don’t want a Christmas you can buy.
I don’t want a Christmas you can make.
What I want is a Christmas you can hold.
A Christmas that holds me,
Remakes me. Revives Me.
I want a Christmas that Whispers, Jesus
– Ann Voskamp
Sounds lovely, yes? A perfect paragraph until that last line – Jesus.
Wait, what? Aren’t you a Christian.
Why yes I am, but I still bristle at certain Christian habits/sayings/ideas. In fact, I really don’t like “religion” at all. I don’t care what you wear to church, don’t care if you eat or not eat fish on Friday, whether you are baptized or confirmed, if you read your Bible (okay, I do care about that one but for reasons probably different than you think), I don’t care if you decorate your house for Halloween. You want Santa in your house…go for it. I simply don’t care about all that ‘religious stuff’.
AND I also don’t like when the name Jesus is thrown around. I certainly don’t like when it is used in vain but I also struggle when used dramatically…like above. I’m just not mushy and I struggle with super feely people, literature, social media…I’d much prefer to cut through all that feeling and get to the facts, the bottom line.
Let me clarify lest I’ve lost you. I love God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit. I am a Christian and I am here to testify that I CANNOT imagine life without a relationship with a Lord and Savior. But my journey to here has been less than direct and of the three I probably wrestle the most with Jesus. I can blame society, religious people, hypocritical people, my parents, my past. But who cares where/what…facts are facts. He and I are still on our journey.
Grace – my grace is sufficient for you
Saved – I have saved you from this world
Faith – believing things that are unseen
Holy – I have set you apart from this world.
Peace – peace that surpasses all understanding
Hope – there really is more to life that what you can see
Magical and supernatural – I did create all the universe you know.
Where do we go from here? Join me on this Christmas journey…let’s embark on this Holy Advent together. Set aside the crazy busy of this world and be still so you can hear the Christmas that whispers, Jesus.
xoxox – DM