Thirty one years ago this Christmas season, my life looked pretty overwhelming. Two months before the holiday season, I was told by my daughter's orthopedic surgeon, that there was a very good chance that my daughter would never walk. Mistakes made to correct severe hip dysplasia, deemed her small, under one year old bones, to atrophy in the process of 'healing'. Not any news a new mama wants to hear.
Christmas brought a season over hanging with an impending surgery in January and expectations, with no guarantees, of perhaps, an alteration in her grim prognosis. Anger, disappointment in the medical community, frustration with her limitations and just general crappy attitude, kept me grim and not nice to be around. Friends avoided me and my family got tired of being my cheerleader. Poor Hubby had his own issues. A handicapped daughter AND a shrew (nice word) of a wife. (Had to take it out on someone, right?)
One night, rocking my little girl while she was weighed down in her oddly angled full body cast, reaching for the ornaments, that she could not move to get, that I literally sighed out loud, 'No one understands this! It's upsetting but there is soo much worse,that I feel guilty for feeling so badly about this! I want to get on but I am so stuck! No one gets it!!'
Since I was raised Catholic and knew it was my 'duty' to place my creche in a visible place in my quasi Catholic grown up home. Knew it would please our parents, but had no personal interest in the whole religious thing. Especially now.
Then, as my Eldest daughter drifted off to sleep, my eyes cast to the neglected nativity scene. As I stared at the tiny manger, a very clear thought came to me. I knew enough catechism from all those years in Catholic school, that God had a very intended purpose for sending Christ into this world. And He, omniscient and sovereign as He is, knew exactly the course His relatively short life would follow. And it was grim. The Stations of the Cross at Easter time told me of the travails that Christ suffered in the hands of sinful men. Me being chief among them.
So God knew exactly what His Son would suffer. That there was a purpose for it all. And He loved ME enough to allow it all. God understood my 'little' pain. He knew ALL my dear, little 11 month old Rhiannon would go through with her cross. He knew what I would need to get through it all. And He promised to go through it all with me.
While my baby slept on me, I quietly wept tears of relief, joy, penitence and hope. I knew, for the first time in my life, that the birth, death and resurrection of my Savior was not just stories or good religion, but it was personal. It was for me. For you. Forever.
I embraced the love of Christ with all my heart and all that meant. Good and Bad. Because I now knew that I was not alone. That my Heavenly Father had designed just what I needed, no matter how I perceived it; His view of the tapestry of my life was much clearer than my muddled perspective.
How He sustained me through the days, months, years to follow, would fill volumes. He allowed me in all my spiritual naivete, to view His amazing healing power. He showed me how all the irritations and pain in this life, prepares us for a greater work...
It is all good. With Him.
And this day we commemorate the incarnation, God becoming human, to be the perfect sacrifice for our sin filled lives.....For the hope of an eternity spent with Him.. How wonderful is that?
My prayer is for all that are reading this, that you would consider your eternity. There is a grand plan authored by an amazing God that not only created us for this earth, but has planned for our eternal life as well....How loving is that...
Ask Him to explain this all to you. He will. And may you be blessed.....
Merry, blessed Christmas to you all..... Love, Deb.....