Wednesday, December 18, 2013

I'm Leaving on a Jet Plane by Tony Manley

If you are as old as me, then you are humming the rest of that phrase from an old 70’s song by that title! This Thursday, David and I will be flying to the Middle East to spend Christmas with our middle son and his family. Can you say “wow” with me? Excited, overwhelmed, nervous, ready, not ready...basically, I am all over the board with my thoughts!
They are kind enough to want us there, and we are desirous enough to want to be there. God arranged the flights and dates so perfectly. He has provided a suitcase of “wish lists” for them, and now, all that is left is the flight over.

In the process of getting ready to go, I have discovered some interesting surprises about my heart and Christmas. (I am sure anyone that knows me knew this was going to be about the heart at some point ☺)

Christmas is Jesus’ birthday. I know it, I teach it, I sing it, and I raised my children on it. But I have found out during the last few weeks, that if there is not a Christmas tree, stockings, lights on the mantle, a Christmas holiday spent the same way as the last hundred have been spent – in a sensory frenzy- then Christmas doesn’t “feel” like Christmas. Did I just say that out loud?!
The birth of Christ is not about all the sights, smells, sounds, or tastes of Christmas. I know that intellectually, but evidently I have been surprised at my own heart not being as “Christmasy” as I normally feel.  “But God” had begun teaching me about Advent! Advent is the preparing for a coming event or person. I do not think it is a coincidence that this is the year He chose for me to go through the Christmas season with a “bare house” in order to experience just Him in the den teaching and focusing my heart on Christ’s coming!

A Christmas in the desert is definitely an out of the box event for me, but this year’s celebration of Jesus’ birthday is fresh and focused on His first coming and the renewed excitement of His second coming!
O Come, O Come, Immanuel!

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