Monday, December 31, 2012

Imagine...Inspire....

This might be a long rambling post or it might be quite short.  I have a heart full of feeling, but not sure I have words...so, I will just begin.

Weeks ago, maybe even years ago, I realized that I am not a big fan of Christmas...at least not the frenzied festivity filled version.

I don't know why we have to squish all the love and peace to the world and joy and brotherhood and gift giving into the few short weeks from Thanksgiving until December 25th.

Maybe it is just my age or this season in my life.  Maybe I am just turning into a Grinch.  I used to enjoy searching for the right gift, wrapping it up pretty and presenting it to the one person it was meant for especially.  I used to love bringing out the Christmas carols.  I have an amazing collection of Christmas creches and I know how to decorate a Christmas tree that I want to just sit in front of for hours.   Now, I don't want to be bothered with getting them out and putting them away....sigh.

All of that was already going through my head, when a most horrible thing happened on December 21 to my sweet friend Rachel, and her family.  Lives lost....Christmas forever changed...

But, it is in this tragedy, that the miracle of Christmas begins to blossom...
LOVE.  Not for a season or a holiday, but for a lifetime.

So,  I am beginning again to imagine the Love of Christmas and I am beginning to see it lasting all year long.  I won't be waiting to try to get it all done in December.  I will be peacefully spreading it out from now until then.  I am inspired.

If I have the perfect gift, card, song, letter, word for you in my heart or hands, I am going to give it to you and we will share joy.  I am going to look for ways to share joy each and every month...maybe I will be celebrating the 25th of each month!  What can we call this celebration????

God didn't come to love us for a season.  He's in it for the everafter!

So, Happy New Year and here's to celebrating the Miracle of Love all year long!
Here's to bringing light to dark places all year long.
Here's to joy everlasting.

And peace.




14 comments:

Rachel said...

I love this. You aren't a grinch. You are seeing things the way the Lord is seeing things. His birth and what it represents isn't for just a season... it is for all of eternity! I love the idea of celebrating all year long. I agree with you. Hear! Hear!!

Donna said...

Let's do it! Happy New-Year Long Christmas! Love you...miss you...

Rachel said...

I love and miss you too!!!! 2013 means I get to see you again!

K said...

No Grinch talk, please. I will say this: I love all the traditions of the season, even though what we celebrate on December 25th has easily as much to do with celebrating an ancient and romantic version of the miracle of light in a dark winter (which is, of course, based on the much more ancient truth of the light and love and sacrifice of the Christ). We hang evergreens (or models of them, in my case -fake pine garlands that nonetheless stir my heart) and bits of color in defiance of shades of gray, and string tiny lights that are a mighty celebration of what a very small spark can do in an otherwise deep darkness. This happens in December because of the solstice - because the people who lived by flame in the night had to remind themselves that the season, at its darkest point, turned again toward re-birth. That the sun would come again. But really, that the Son would come again.

The earth itself plays out the story. And I think, if you look at the history, find the dates of the census taken in Judea, you would find that the actual birth of the Lord happened in April, not in December. Still, whatever the celebration is - including the gifts of God in evergreen, in the light stored long-time in a huge yule log, there to be set free in the time of darkest absence of hope, this scrap-quilted celebration of ours weaves the birth and the crucifixion, the tragedy and magnificence of mortal life and the plan of salvation, all into one strange, Old English Manor celebration. And I will always love it.

My problem is that there were so many people this year - so many I love so much - and I had determined to try and give something of myself to each one. But I realize that I have to give that job to Christ, because I can't do it. And trying nearly killed me. These moments, though, of trying to shape a little of my love into a small thing that could pass from hand to hand and be kept around as a reminder of my love and respect? They were wonderful moments. At times, the process became dogged, and in the end, the delivery was the worst part. The worst part about it was that, even though I started in January, I ran out of things long before I ran out of people.

I am dwarfed by my blessings.

Sometimes it takes a tough reminder about our mortality to rip the veil a bit and let us see what is behind all of this living, this striving, this loving. Someone slips behind that veil and we are left with a great, gaping hole in the fabric of our love, in the beauty of our days. But of course, the pain is mortal; the love is eternal. Right now, I am suffering from the mortal inability to hold all the love inside of one small self - and that makes me cry, just like the loss of something makes me cry. Mortality? In some ways, you just can't win.

I have spent, in other words, this whole year trying to spread out the holding of that love over all the twelve months - but have found that sometimes you just have to sit under the waterfall of love and beauty and mercy and realize that there is nothing you can do to hold it entirely.

I haven't been able to write about any of it. Not hardly all year long. Trying to use my talents and increase them so that I do not waste what gifts I have been given. And ran aground because there are no plates large enough to hold the bounty and no stomach that can handle the whole buffet table.

Today, I am tired. So I have to go get on the treadmill and find my energy.

I hear what you have written. I know the heart behind the words. See? You are part of the burden of my joy.

W-S Wanderings said...

To joy everlasting. To light ever shining. To love that knows no end.

Donna said...

To each and every one of us and all through out the year....I think John Denver said something like that on his Christmas with the Muppets album....

Donna said...

Yippee!

Tanna at The Brick Street Bungalow said...

Donna, this is such a beautiful post. And, I can relate very well to the "grinch" part... thankfully, that has past for me in some ways (mostly because my daughter loves Christmas so much that is when they come to stay a month). But, I love Thanksgiving because it is a time of thankfulness and visiting and no expectations... no commercialism... simple and good. I wish Christmas felt that same way, too. I am so sorry for whatever happened to your friend Rachel's family. Sending you hugs and all the best wishes for a wonderful 2013... every day. blessings ~ tanna

W-S Wanderings said...

Oh, the Muppets. Are they still around? I loved Kermit.

Song. Singing. It's healing. Let's all sing together.

To singing.

Donna said...

Thanks, Tanna....I am looking for simple and good! I"m going to find it, I'm sure. <3

Donna said...

I don't know if they are still around or not....this cassette was from years ago, but it was a great one! Taught several of them to kindergarten classes for Christmas programs....
Singing is one of my favorite things. I am absolutely not very good and have no illusions and that is SO freeing. I don't have to worry about shining...I just sing!

Donna said...

Hello, dear! I hear what you are saying and I agree that there is a time for things and winter needs a spot of light perhaps (even though I love the winter and the quiet and the gray and white and the starkness just as much as I love the lush abundance of spring and summer and the wild abandon of fall). I just want to spread it out. I want to create and gift all along. And yours is created....I just need to get to the gifting part!
Maybe it is the fact that I tried for a few years to hold my family together after my mom died and just couldn't. Maybe it is the fact that neither of my brothers cared for the pomp and circumstance, the detective work, the sacrificial giving, the joyous anticipation that I wanted Christmas to be....see? I do get how it is for most people. But for me it causes stress and heart hurting. I won't abandon it all together, but I think I can spread it out...
The whole concept of a 'burden of joy' is interesting isn't it? Very love unending....
Love me still.

Tanna at The Brick Street Bungalow said...

YES, you will. ;)

Donna said...

Ah...you came back! :-)