The emerging glow & me. Our family's tree is the only light needed to compose this greeting of Christmas from our home. My fingertaps on the keyboard effortlessly find rhythm. Their timing is unisonous with the swirl-swish of a running dishwasher from the kitchen. Our house is at rest. Slumbering safely in beds with Sunday fresh washed sheets. Good night was so many hours ago. Oh how I have anticipated this moment stolen away from the ones I love. This eagerness in my heart is worthwhile and happily sweet. It is the hour of reflection; the moment where my mind memoirs the miracles curled and tucked inside these bedrooms of three. I remind myself of joy and how it sounds, the way it feels and the hope it brings. Daily. It weaves us closer to one another. Joy does. Fiercely and with perfect finesse, joy lives. And, tonight I get to tell you our Christmas story. Our story of joy. My anticipation peaks with delight so much that my toes tingle and my hearts swirls warmth even now.
He was born. Lowly, in foul conditions and discreet. Our savior breathed life into this world. A leader. A teacher. A worker and a servant for others. He was the listener. The tender of hearts. The encouraging word. The arms to fall into. His arrival is our joy. It is that strong center you feel. That deep exhale when things work out just right. That restful sleep you so desperately needed. The laughter silly with a loved one. The leaning when you are broken & alone and full of doubt. The learning and lifting up too. He is all of it. Jesus Christ is our journey. He is the joy maker and the one who knows just how we need to be woven. Together. Through time. With touch and tenacity. Through trials and triumph. Through the terrible too. He is our Christmas story.
And the best part? We all have one. A story. Whether you be a lover of words or intolerant to the printed type, your story is being written. It's taking shape with characters and so many settings. Plots grow and change. Pinnacles and pitfalls happen. Yes, our story is penned. For joy cannot compromise. It cannot wait. It has a job most profound and a principle most precise. As hearts make the best storytellers. And, Christ is everything heart worthy. Yes, the little one born. Fiercely & with perfect finesse, His breaths numbered on this Earth were for joy weaving. With toes tingling and my heart swirling, my fingers skip quickly across this keyboard anxiously hopeful to share just a smidgeon of what His birth has storied for us this year.
They grow. Our 2 boys are becoming young men. They are so very much a part of mine and Kenny's story. Uniquely different in almost every way, Eli and Casey are the best of friends. They connect on levels far beyond our comprehension.
They create. Pretending is what they do best. With costume changes x 20, their days ensue. Effortlessly, their stages for play evolve. Whether it be Eli with his quest to reenact Pearl Harbor or Casey with his complete coverage, commentary and compelling 4 quarter compilations in the backyard, our boys have been given the precious gift of imagination.
This year was the year His story weaved abounding & everlasting joy into our boys' lives. As chronicled here, both Eli Garrett and Casey McGill asked Christ into their hearts in February. My soul will forever remember the overwhelming swell of peace to have been given the opportunity to lead both boys in prayer with their decisions. During the spring, the boys followed in believer's baptism. Above is an image captured from this happy moment written forever in our family's Christmas story.
The script of our Eli is one written to include effort, excellence and energy. His soul is made for precision. He is one of loyalty and honor. He immerses himself in history and military methods. His passion for reading is immense. He usually has at least 3 books in progress towards completion at one time. All turned over like tents or teepees on his bedroom floor, our Eli is a scattered source of energy. The pursuit of knowledge is strong in his character. He loves to learn, and has a inner drive for solving problems.
Casey's story is thick with passion and emotion. He is our dramatic leader. Tough & full of grit, he has a determination for excellence. He is our tender heart too. Countless tears have been shed by Casey at the ends of books read, sappy commercials and sad songs heard. He feels deeply and is never afraid to share that vulnerability. Stubborn and self-reliant are so very worthy adjectives of our youngest. Driven to know people and a lover of action, our Casey Face possesses a steady confidence and life pace.
These boys have fallen in love. With the world of dreams. Through their creative play, devouring of books and steadfastness with one another, passion envelopes them. They grow. Our 2 boys are becoming young men. Joy has fibrous cords thick and unwaveringly woven inside these hearts of 2. This joy newly found & present only tightens the weave of connectedness that God has gifted to Kenny and me.
And, our Christmas story? It begins with a little boy alone in his room asking Jesus to become His forever so very long ago. That same little boy would grow up only to share that very joy storied in his heart with his 20 year old sweetheart. And, like stories often do, they make deposits into your soul. You are made more for the moments spent wrapped in the reading. Through time. With touch and tenacity. Through trials and triumph. Through the terrible too. At 22 years old, alone in my room, Christ became my all in all. My Christmas story began.
We are woven. In this life, Kenny is my counterpart. He is my guide and he knows my good. So many chapters in the book of Kenny are of relentless dedication to excellence. He is loyal and strong and full of wit. His life is upward. I see joy transparent in his eyes. He smiles with character and strength. My Christmas story began because of him. For joy could not compromise. It could not wait. Through Kenny, joy made itself known to me. And, the little one born lowly, in foul conditions & discreet poured into me. As my story is told, as each new page finds its ink, I journey with a heart full and spoken for. My steps are learning more about what it means to be generous, my time is becoming more grace filled and my heart is investing more in the genuine of me. Joy moving. Joy living. Fiercely and with a perfect finesse, God is making me more.
Our Christmas greeting this year is a wish. For you. For us all. A hope for more times of together: simple & strong. For less worry over the race of hurry, check off & measure up and more focus on the pace that centers your soul steady with peace & progress. It's more face-to-face. It's more sitting still. It's finding your story in the one who loved you enough to want to write it. Jesus Christ is our journey. He is the joy maker and the one who knows just how we are to be woven.
We all have one. A story. Your story is being written. It's taking shape with characters and so many settings. Plots that grow and change. Pinnacles and pitfalls happen too. Our story is His joy. His breaths numbered on this Earth were meant for weaving. May your Christmas journey be one full of hope and a whole lot of happy.
"I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." JOHN 16:33
Merry Christmas from our family to yours,
p.s. Please join me as I continue my new blog series. You can read more about it here. Now, through the beginning of the new year, it is my hope to lay some serious smack down on what it means to really sparkle.