If I'm being honest, going to infusion Christmas Eve morning hasn't left me feeling very Christmas-y. And even though I am surrendered to it- it is what it is-I haven't quite figured out how to honor the spirit of Christmas with chemo, infusion, or cancer.
I've also alluded to some of the changes coming our way. We've carefully considered and weighed all of our options. In order to continue to keep up with the high cost of treatment and our ongoing obligations, we have decided to move Rick's office to our home. It was a difficult decision to make, but we are stepping forward in faith that eventually this will simplify our lives and reduce expenses. We've also listed our van on Craigslist. And Rick has sold some of his cameras and other photo gear.
None of this is because we aren't able to manage just fine right now. But we need to be realistic about the uncertain nature of the future and be as fiscally responsible as we can right now.
Making these decisions has honestly been the toughest part- its been far easier to execute and move forward with the decisions behind us.
But with all of these serious decisions chasing us down- how do we capture the joy and wonder of the Christmas season? Especially when I start off the day at infusion?
I think the answer trudged right through my front door in a series of blessings. While I was caught up in the frenzied loads of office equipment arriving daily and the stacks of clutter and mess shoved to the corners of our living room, the answers were there for me when I was ready to see.
I ordered this tealight holder online through a special offer from Dayspring. Taking full advantage of the offer, I bought several, and delighted in giving some to friends. Its sturdy, solid and heavy- a substantial piece, with an even more substantial message.
The birth story of baby Jesus in Luke 2 1-20.
I absent- mindedly forgot to order a Christmas wreath for us this year, but this was a welcome fill-in. The fragrant branches and beautiful colors filled our house with Christmas cheer. Thank you Stavenger family!
It was superman who found this lying in the snow in our driveway. It had been duct taped to something and the wind must have lifted it off. Not only was it a beautiful card- but it had Christmas money and an anonymous note from a friend of our youngest sons. Thank you- neighborhood angel- your gift gave me more than you could possibly know!
I think the message in this "Clinging Cross," could not have been more timely. Thank you to our angel - Jennifer- my friend from far away.
There have been platters of goodies, oodles of cards and a steady stream of abundance. Thank you to everyone who took the time to deliver some Christmas cheer to our door!
But it's remained true- I've been caught in the midst of chasing down the "perfect" Christmas. With all of the tradition, the decorating, the baking, the magic-making I could muster- amongst the chaos of our life.
And chemo was messing up my idea of perfect.
But I kept being drawn back to my Star and its message- Love came down.
I finally sat down and read Luke 2 1-20.
I sat looking at the handmade card with
And I was reminded of the humble beginnings of the tiny babe. Mary and Joseph would have perhaps preferred a room at the Inn, with a bed and a midwife.
Plus, a cradle, rather than a cattle trough or manger for their newborn.
I wonder how anxious they might have been. Worried, frightened, alone perhaps.
They got a drummer boy, and 3 wise men. They got a stable, and swaddling cloths for warmth and hay for softness maybe.
Some would say they were blessed.
And I wonder, how many of us forget about the blessings in the hay, when we find ourselves in the stable instead of the inn?
Perfect does not exist in CHRISTmas.
Christmas is about God's perfect love for us given through the birth of baby Jesus.
Wishing you Christmas Blessings!