My Christmas was sweet; I hope yours was too. Last year I was recovering from surgery and so couldn’t go anywhere on Christmas Eve, so we kept to ourselves. The whole evening R kept saying, “I really like this. This is nice.” So this year, we stayed to ourselves by choice, and it was really nice. We took the boys bowling in the afternoon of Christmas Eve, and a really big snowstorm rolled in as we bowled. We picked up pizza on the way home and then built a fire and “snuggled down,” as I like to say. We watched the Luke II video and, my favorite, Mr. Krueger’s Christmas. (Favorite line: “I believe I spoke to you about that at the time,” which Mr. K says to baby Jesus about his problem with a tenant.) Then we read the story, sang some songs, opened a present. It was all just sweet and, well, sweet.
The next morning we tore into the loot. Favorite quotes: 4-yr-old, with his hand in his stocking, “Oh! I’ve ALWAYS WANTED ONE OF THESE!!!!” And then he pulled out a regular-sized Hershey bar. And the following conversation, right after 4-year-old opened his big present from Santa:
6-yr-old: Hey, I saw that under the Grandpa [spare] bed last week!
9-yr-old: [pointing to me, in great excitement] That means that YOU ARE SANTA!!!
[I busy myself getting the toys out of their packaging]
9: I know, let’s go down and see if that toy you saw is still under the bed. If it’s not, we’ll know that Mom is Santa.
[6 and 9 go downstairs. I’m busy helping 4 open his stuff.]
[A few minutes later they troop back upstairs]
6: Maybe Santa just brought it early and kept it there because he knew it wouldn’t fit in the chimney.
[No more is said.]
So, how was your 2007? Mine was a year of suffering, I admit. And learning. And also great appreciation for small and simple pleasures, tender mercies, compensatory blessings. We had many. As I look towards 2008 and set some resolutions, I have one great desire of my heart which is, of course, that I will return to health this year. But even more than that I want to feel God working in my life, even if it is through continued struggles with my health. I feel that I could probably endure just about anything as long as I felt the Lord near. I also believe, though, that we are not necessarily guaranteed that we will always feel Him near, even when we are righteous. But it’s sweet to realize that it is my greatest yearning, even greater than my yearning for health. It’s nice to know that about myself after a year like this.
What about you? How have you grown, and where do you hope to be next year? My best wishes for a happy new year to you!