10 January, 2012

Gotta Love That Red-nose Reindeer!

My kids are fascinated by Rudolph the Red-nose Reindeer this year. Last year, John Ross could have cared less, but this year it is definitely a highlight! He sings, dances, and panics in all the right places.

Amidst all of his joy, I'll be the first to admit that this season has been rough on this mama this year. Advent is one of my favorite times of year. I thrive on the anticipation, joy, and dare I say peace of the season. When things are less than peaceful, I am good at remembering that riding on a donkey nine months pregnant and giving birth in a cave is anything but peaceful. But this year, that explanation isn't taming the stress in my heart.

We have two weeks of illness that has required a lot of laundry and cleaning, two ambiguous medical diagnoses, a basement remodel, work politics, holiday work obligations, sitter-drama, and two snapped underwires (this may seem trivial to some, but amidst the big picture bra shopping was a complete nightmare - ultimately resulting in me walking out of the store empty handed). At one point I ended up in tears, in my car, in the middle of a grocery store parking lot at 9:30 at night. I believe my exact phrase to my mother on the phone was, "I just don't know what to do anymore."

And yet, the next day, that sweet little reindeer was on for the umpteenth time this season and a few things resonated with my holiday plight. Here is the list:

She thinks I'm CUTE...sometimes all we need is a little pick me up. We all just need to feel beautiful, loved, and appreciated. A single kind work goes a long way.

We're a couple of misfits...as followers of Christ we don't always fit the mold. Not only that, but we're all different and our differences is what makes our community rich. It's not always easy, but embracing our own differences and standing strong in them is being the person God created us to be.

Fame and fortune...in one of the version of the movie, the song about misfits was replaced with a song called "Fame and Fortune". Fame and fortune in today's world is something that can often become very dark and very lonely. But the words fame and fortune for us a Christians can mean our call to lead an exemplary life and a life that is full of the richness of being - gratitude, generosity, charity.

No human can live on an island...We need to live in community. I'm an introvert (I know, I know...some of you don't believe me...) and most days I would prefer to hole up in my house. With two small children I often feel like I am living in a penguin colony with all the chatter going on. That being said, it is important for everyone to reach out once in awhile for some quality human interaction. We need the perspective, affirmation, and accountability of having others in our life. It's a human need, not just a social desire.
Even the abominable snow monster needs a job...we all have gifts and when we aren't able to use our gifts we can get a little cranky. Serving others does not have to be something out of the ordinary or something we consider a chore. The best type of serving is the type we do best and joyfully. To quote Bishop Bob, "Don't stay out of your gifted area too long."

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