Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Christmas Presence


December has arrived.  

Peace reigns in our home.  

A gentle transformation takes place  around here
as buds of beauty unfurl from roots sunk deep into our hearts.

* * *
“He is coming.”
“Prepare ye the way.”

* * *

Preparations begin with flashing needles that knit hearts and hands together for a gift to wrap around a loved one.

Preparations begin with carols in hand and strings tuned up to plunk or plink as a prelude to concerts shared.

Preparations begin with furniture shifted and books relocated to feather our nest with spots for gentle reading this advent season.

Preparations begin to sparkle, twinkle, ring, and sing out with 
the joy of the season . . . the joy in the reason.

* * *
“It’s here!”
“Christmas arrives!”
“Get up and dance!”
“Sing sweetly!”
“Christ is born!”

* * *

Around Wisteria Cottage the girls plan and prep behind closed doors.  “Don’t come in!” I hear as I tap.  “Okay . . . you can come in now,” follows a bustling and bundling away of hidden treats.  Gary hauls boxes to and fro as Pilgrims pack and leave to make way for the Christ Child.  Matthew partners with us in the celebrations as he conquers his autistic need to be alone and joins in the fun as we dance to the delightful Charlie Brown Christmas soundtrack (his favorite).  I slip off quietly with pen in hand to drink deeply of the peace and joy and love flowing freely in this home.  Though great losses have rocked our world through the recent years, a house built upon The Rock withstands the storms; and the family within the standing home rises up to celebrate in the midst of the torrents.

Once I thought Christmas needed to be planned, orchestrated, budgeted, and executed like a battle.  I fortified against commercialism and dilution by immersing my family in pageants, programs, parties, and all manner of participation to celebrate the Christ Child’s birth, lest any forget and just make merry.  I exhausted myself and often missed the “Peace on Earth” part.

I no longer work to celebrate.  I simply do it.  I simply pause to ponder all the memories and happiness and sweet joy stored up in our traditions.  I no longer fear I will “miss” something as I stop and kneel in the presence of a season filled with so much to ponder.  I wonder as I wander . . . and it is wonder-filled.

We call our Christmas tree a “Memory” tree and we laugh and joke and even wipe away the tears as we unwrap each bauble infused with a meaning all our own.  

* * * 

“Baby’s First Christmas!” . . .  we tell our stories.

“The very first ornament mommy gave to daddy before they were even married!” . . . we tell the story. 

“The Baby Jesus in the manger!”  . . .   we tell HIStory.

* * *

I no longer worry about missing something at Christmastime for I know full well that a Christmas without a tree or a wrapped gift or even a Crèche would still fill us to overflowing with pure delight in gathering our hearts together (even distance between cannot deter us) as we celebrate with the true Presence of Christmas.


farmlady said...

I do wonder, as I wander, why I celebrate this season with such a need. I have always questioned the reasoning for this beautiful celebration but continue to create the conditions for this occasion.
I will probably leave this world with a question mark at the top of my tree instead of a star..... but the memories of this holiday, from years past, are securely wrapped in pretty paper and tied with love.

Kat said...

Wonderful, wonderful! I love this post. It makes me so happy.
I just wrote today about feeling such a peacefulness this year. I don't feel any of the rush, rush, rush, stress, stress, stress I have in the past. I hope I can keep this the entire season. It is wonderful to just BE.

Blessings! :)

FancyHorse said...

Though great losses have rocked our world through the recent years, a house built upon The Rock withstands the storms; and the family within the standing home rises up to celebrate in the midst of the torrents.

Thank you so much for that timely reminder. I very much need it now!

jojo said...

beautiful post, and a great reminder to slow down and just be in the season. There is always a reason to celebrate if we look at the gifts that surround us every day. take care..;j

Karen Deborah said...

beautiful and peace filled, awh sigh.

Jeanne said...

A lovely blog indeed.
Much love and many blessings

Scrappy quilter said...

As always, another wonderful post. To just enjoy each moment, that's what this season is all about. Hugs

Yolanda said...

Hope you have a lovely holiday seaosn.