Sunday, December 15, 2013

A Few Things


We have snow!  How exciting!  Last year I don't think we had an inch, and I don't think it will stay for Christmas. But it's so pretty outside.  I remember snow for Christmas almost every year when I was little.  I grew up in the snow belt, so it was pretty much a sure thing.   Most of the time the snow piles were bigger than us.

(It was obviously a little bright out that day for my sister and I.)

Janey is finally feeling like her sweet happy self again and what a difference that makes.


And I love this message I received in my in-box the other day, and it seemed like perfect timing for me to hear-

"One of the great values of Advent is that of quieting down, of being still, of being awake and alert, so that we might prepare ourselves for the coming of the Lord, and that we might hear his voice when he comes to us. There is no substitute for this preparation. No other way.

It would be a shame to be distracted and miss out.   Hence, this is why in Advent we hear John the Baptist tell us, in no uncertain terms, that we must prepare the way for the Lord-make straight his paths. John tells us to get rid of anything that hinders us from meeting God.

If John would to come to us now in this modern day, perhaps he would be speaking of shutting things off, turning down the volume, putting the gadgets aside, to quiet down, be still, and listen for the voice of God. And, perhaps also, he would also mention going to confession, reading the scriptures, expressing your hunger for God in your prayer. Telling God that you truly want to see his face, that you need him, and that you want to serve him.

John uses a special word for "repent" and "repentance." It's not just simply about being sorry for your sins. The Greek word used [metanoia] means "to go beyond the mind you have." That is, change your attitude, change your way of thinking. Go beyond how you view the world. Not letting the world or the media shape your vision or your values, but rather, more and more, to see things as God sees them, and to walk God's path - not our own. Seeing as God sees changes everything for the better. How we see life and what it's about, how we see each other, how we see ourselves."

The promise of Advent is that God indeed is coming, and that he wants to speak to us, be with us, and through his Holy Spirit, help us to live. But we must say "Yes," and want this. And so, we listen, we prepare the way, we make straight his paths.   This is the challenge of Advent; this is the promise of Advent. God is coming to us, and we joyfully prepare the way.
Msgr. Marvin Borger

"It would be a shame to be distracted and miss out."
My life is so busy right now-not just the day to day parenting and household duties, but the preparation that comes with Christmas.  Layer on top of that the assault (because it really is) of the materialistic messages that dilute it all, and I have to admit, there are times when I am most definitely not feeling any Christmas spirit. But being still, and quieting down, to remind myself what it's really all about is always the answer.  If I don't do this, the season will be gone before I know it, and I will feel like I missed the special-ness of it all.

10 comments:

  1. Beautiful pictures, Sarah...

    And your "all better" baby is adorable. : )

    I wrote a similar post about Christmas...so glad to see others feel the same.

    Enjoy your snow!

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  2. There is something about a heavy snowfall, the beauty and quietness it brings, that I just love. Enjoy your winter wonderland Sarah! :)

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  3. That email was beautiful. What wonderful words for us all to remember during this holy season.
    And isn't it so hard to tune out the materialism? I'm sure it's always been hard to quiet ourselves no matter when we lived. But we must try mustn't we.
    Thanks for the reminder.

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  4. Oh Sarah, I loved this! I've had all of the same thoughts today. I am ready to burrow in with my family and shut out the world til Christmas. Enjoy your snow!

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  5. Perfect to hear today. Thank you, Sarah. Merry Christmas!

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  6. This post is such a beautiful reflection of who you are and why I love your blog. Thank you, Sarah.

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  7. I feel so blessed to have come across your blog today! Your e mailer really touched my heart. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.
    Merry Christ mas!

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  8. How cute your little one is in her bright red jacket :) So sweet!

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