Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Eve

I love Christmas Eve! The sense of expectation is so strong that it colours everything that happens. I discovered after some reflection this year that my favorite Christmas carols are the ones that show what it would have been like waiting for a Saviour to be born.

Here are two of my favorite lines:

"Long lay the world in sin and error pining/ Til He appeared/ and the soul felt its worth/ A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices" ~ O Holy Night

"O come, O come Emmanuel/ and ransom captive Israel/ that mourns in lonely exile here/ Until the Son of God appears/ Rejoice,Rejoice Emmanuel Shall come to thee O Israel" ~ O come, O come Emmanuel

Although I can't go backwards in time to know what loneliness and longing the Israelites would have felt while waiting for the most important event in history to happen, I feel that sense of expection every time I hear these songs. I am so glad that Emmanuel has come and that He is here. That means that anything is possible for me, for my family and for the world. I heard a beautiful name for God when an aboriginal elder prayed a few days ago "Great mystery". Now I know that God has revealed his character through His Son, but He still has an aura of mystery about Him. He is huge, larger than anything I can wrap my mind around and that makes Him mysterious. My blog is named Magic and Mystery for a reason. I love the sense of wonder that the world has to offer. Take some time to think on the "Great Mystery" tonight as celebrate His arrival to the world tomorrow. Christmas blessings to you all and to all a good night.

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Monday, December 21, 2009

The Grace of Crying

I am learning the joys or "recreational crying" after avoiding it like the plague for so many years. It all started while I was watching a very depressing movie I had stumbled upon while flicking through the channels. As soon as it started to look like things were going sideways and might become depressing I felt anxiety and the urge to flip the channel. Something inside me snapped and I decided it was time to face the uncomfortable side of the world. (Now granted this movie wasn't real....but the same pattern was happening in my personal life as well). Safe to say I finished the movie balling like a little baby. It was after all a movie about a guy facing the death penalty.

Just last night I finished the book Grace by Richard Paul Evans. It is a beautiful story about a "little match girl", a child runaway who is escaping the horrific abuse in her home. She is helped by a little boy whose life she alters forever. This book is a beautiful story about a boy who chose to face what the rest of society refused to see at the time. While the rest of the world turned their eyes to the horrific events that went on behind closed doors he stared them head on and was scarred forever by what he saw. In the scarring though, he found his calling, a fresh purpose for living. He also discovered a love that withstood time.

There was some beautiful lines in the story that touched my heart. Many of you who followed my old blog know that I love quotes.

"Hard things, if they don't kill you, make you grow. Sometimes they even make you lose fear"

"Eric has given me the greatest Christmas of my life and the greatest gift. I gave him truth, and he still loved me"

"As often happens in life, from our hurts come our greatest blessings"

All these quotes proved to me a great spiritual truth that I had been consistently ignoring. The reason I was stagnant in my life, walking the same circles over and over again is that I categorically refused to walk through the pain to see the other side. I failed to even acknowledge that healing might involve pain. I am there now, acknowledging it, looking at the junk in my life and not trying to make it go away. It has been a hard process but it has also been beautiful too. I feel like I am making some faltering steps that might free from baggage I have been carrying most of my life. That thought scares the crap out of me, but it also excites me. I could surely use a fresh wind.