This year we saw much human tragedy, but we also saw a world come together in solidarity and faith to help those unfortunate enough to be in natures path.
2010 proved to hold the largest record of natural disasters in a generation. Earthquakes, heat waves, floods, volcanoes, super typhoons, blizzards, landslides and droughts. Hati, Pakistan, Chile, Turkey, China and Indonesia. Volcanic eruptions in Iceland. Mining disasters here in the U.S., Chili, China, and Australia. The Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill. But the most amazing thing I witnessed this year was a world fellowship, a coming together in these hard economic times to give whatever we could to the people across the globe who were left homeless and orphaned and to save our natural resources. We found hope beyond basic survival and we united and celebrated our humanity.
We, as a nation, continue to be blessed. By all news accounts, our economy has rebounded considerably compared to this time last year. Shoppers are getting back out there and folks have added even more giftee’s to their list (Pretty paper, pretty ribbons of blue…). Though many still struggle in these difficult times, it looks like our national hopefulness is on an upswing, and that's one of the best gifts this year. But no matter where we fall, individually, on the prosperity scale or what we intended to do with our December, we all get so busy and bustle-y and run from here to there meeting the demands of the holiday.
Bustle-y-ness not withstanding , I hope everyone also took time out for quiet reflection on the joy of this holiday: "The Word became flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth" (John 1:14).
My Christmas wish for you today is that you are gathered in a warm home with your family this morning, snuggled tight in your jammies, slippered feet tucked under you while you sip a hot cup of tea/coffee/cocoa. I'm 3,000 wintery miles apart from my family this year but, as the old song says, they're just a memory away. I believe that family is one of our greatest blessings and Christmas holds so many treasured memories of our time spent with our brothers & sisters, aunts & uncles, moms & dads, and those beautiful new additions celebrating baby’s first Christmas.
Remember another baby, be sure to make room for Him today and every day:
Nearby some shepherds were keeping watch over their flock. And an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them; and they were terribly frightened. But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” (Luke 2:4-11)
Joy to the World! The Lord is come!
Let earth receive her King
Let every heart prepare Him room
Let heaven and nature sing
Let heaven, and heaven and nature sing
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Heavenly Father, thank you for the many blessings of this year and for sending Your Son to walk among us, to teach us, to save us. My Redeemer lives in my heart forever. Amen