My underlying mission here is always the same: Excavate & dust off some “bit of God” that’s become buried under our bustling lives. Illuminate something about Christmas that explains why it’s so much more powerful than just another hour at Mass or another bedtime prayer.
What comes to mind this year is this: I think maybe there’s a veil that we weave around us … year by year, using all our hands, working diligently on many looms. The thread of our veil is made from the distraction & accumulation of things we don’t need, the fatigue of working twice as many hours as we ought to–or want to, holding grudges & passing judgments, (even on ourselves), wallowing in self-pity or regret. Even the best of us are guilty of partaking in a bit of this “weaving” from time to time, and as we add layer after layer, this veil begins to insulate us like a big heavy quilt. But…instead of keeping us warm, it keeps us cold; insulated from the warmth & healing of God’s touch; his big impossible “smile” that literally yanks tears of joy from our eyes. We keep our brows furrowed, heads down, and jaws clenched, thinking there’s a “finish line” that we’re nearing. We just forget that overused, hokey cliché that’s just dripping with truth: The journey not the destination.
So, let’s leave behind that metaphoric mess, and wrap up our analogy with a bit of brightness: As Christmas time nears, it’s like the whole season is a village, built upon a thin patch of this veil we’ve woven. A place where our thread doesn’t quite hold up. This is where God lives, and just maybe we get a little closer to him around his “Birthday”. His light and love shine and burn through those threads we’ve woven like a torch on a cobweb. And on some level, we recognize this and a piece of us is pleading, “Don’t let me forget! Oh PLEASE Father, I want to stay here where it’s so warm and bright all the time!”
But despite this yearning, most of us “return home” after the holidays…back to the loom. But still others may decide to stay in that big bright beautiful village. If you’re reading this, then maybe you’re one of them? We “stay” by way of being grateful for something every day, even if it’s something “ordinary” like the sound of your wife’s giggle, hitting 3 green lights in a row, the hiss of the school bus brakes as it drops your child back home again, or your favorite sports team coming back from certain defeat. We “stay” by checking in with that friend that seemed a bit “off” the last time we saw them. Sacrificing a comfortable evening at home to support a friend or donate a few hours to a cause. Forgiving someone who hurt us, apologizing for something stupid we said or did, or telling someone how we really feel about them, knowing how vulnerable it leaves us. I sure hope my family and I are among those who stay…and I hope we bump into all of you “around town” from time to time. Maybe we can have a coffee together and talk about what we’re grateful for!
So from our family to yours, we hope you have the very brightest Christmas you’ve ever DREAMT of having. May you stay happy, healthy, and enthusiastic all of your days, and may your veil never get so thick that you can’t see that big bright light. Merry Christmas all.
The LaVoie Family: Ken, Deb and Elissa Rose
Central Maine Web ~ Southern Angel Properties