christmas-letterSomeone said I became a writer the year I wrote my Christmas letter and described the blue lights high up on a snowy hill on our farm in Kentucky. That was a hard year. My mother had died and I was missing her Christmas traditions that I was now trying to keep going in my own home. I was sad and nostalgic, letting my heart travel to new, unfamiliar places. A new depth entered my realm of thinking. I could embrace the pain and in embracing it, something transformational happened.  When I decided to share my sadness and loneliness with others through writing, it became a fragrance for others to receive. Little did I know I was being prepared for events that would take me  further in my journey of transformation. Gifts come in mysterious ways.

I guess I would ask you this Christmas: Have your life events moved you in a direction of transformation? Oh, I love hearing about everyone’s year in their Christmas greeting: births, weddings, trips and accomplishments, but I wonder more about your thoughts and how you love your family and friends. Tell me what is was like when you lost your job and your neighbors rallied round. Tell me what is was like when you were told there were no more treatment options. Tell me how you long for your son or daughter to return from war or estrangement. See, what happens to most of us is this: when the hard days come we shut down, retreat, worry and refuse to share our hurts, especially in the Christmas cards we send. Pride closes the door to transformation while others wait for your story. There is always someone who needs to smell the fragrance of human life by simply sharing a memory, remembering a special time, talking over a concern or maybe, just being silent together.

Consider Jesus, the fragrance of human life as we move through this week.

Paul writes: “Who being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself.” Philippians 2:6-8

May these days of our coming Jesus explode in wonder and grace as you ponder his presence. May you find hope when you think there is none, peace when you feel unsettled, and love always abounding. Just for you. May you share the excitement of Christ in your lives and rejoice with laughter like children anticipating Christmas morning.