With Advent just around the corner, I’ve spent part of this past week praying about why we celebrate Advent. I could give you the official reason I suppose, but I can’t really answer that question on a personal level for anyone but myself.
On October 29th, 2007 I miscarried a baby. I was hurting physically, emotionally and spiritually. The miscarriage although difficult, left me with a greater appreciation for life, big and small, weak and strong.
By the time my body had rested and done some healing, Advent was upon us. I can’t really say that I was excited for Christmas. I wasn’t really up for the malls, the lights, the parties or any of the things typically associated with the holidays. But, for the first time in my life, I was excited about the birth of Christ. Losing my baby had left this gaping hole in my heart that needed repair, and the only thing that was going to fill that space was a baby. How timely that Christ was coming just for me in the weeks that lay ahead, in the form of an infant.
The coming of the word make flesh suddenly took on new meaning for me. Not only was I overjoyed that He was coming, I needed Him to come. For those weeks of Advent, I was filled with new hope. Those weeks were blessed with prayer like I had not experienced since my conversion. God gave me hope that even if I never could carry a baby to full term, I was no less of a wife or woman. Hope that Christ will not abandon us, that we will never be alone if we choose to walk with Him. Hope that although the little life inside of me was no longer present, there was life around me and beyond me where my 2 miscarried babies were now living in the loving arms of their Father.
I believe that God gave Christ to the world as a gift. He gave the gift of His only Son to fill us with hope that there is life beyond death. That death on this earth is not the end of our relationship with Him. This gives me peace. Peace that surpasses all understanding. Peace even when things are not 100% in my relationship with God, because this life is only a fraction of the time we will have with Him in eternity.
Although painful, there is something about losing a loved one that hopefully reminds us what life should really be about. What the Holidays should really be about. Christmas is not about stuff. Christmas is about Christ. It is about a person. A person who loves us with a depth that we will never comprehend. I want this Christmas to be about Christ. I want it to be about love. Loving Christ through loving my family and the wonderful people we have come to call our friends. That is what I will be focusing on in these weeks to come. Not the flashy, expensive or big things, but the simple, thoughtful and kind things I can do to make this a special season. Those who know me have probably heard me say things like, “Go big or go home!!” which I am very prone to..especially when it comes to Holiday decor. I will still do that, there will be lights and a tree and gifts, but they will serve the purpose of bringing cheer to our home as we celebrate the real reason for our hope.
I hope to be posting more often what with my head ready to explode with all of the Advent-y type ideas buzzing around. I hope you will keep coming back in the weeks to come and see how our Advent preparations unfold. Bless you!