Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all of you who have read my blog this year. I hope your Christmas was all that you wanted it to be! Whether you enjoyed the gift of celebrating with family and friends or whether you “visited” through the miracle of modern technology, I pray your heart was filled with a sense of belonging. If you felt the loneliness of loved ones who are no longer here to celebrate, or the gap left by a relationship that is broken I pray you found the gift of solace.
What traditions do you enjoy at Christmas? Christmas Eve service always hits me emotionally as I sing the familiar carols with whatever family members have joined us. This year was no different. I sat between my “new” kids and let the wonder of music and candlelight sweep over me… and I cried.
The best gift for us this year was sharing our Christmas with two beautiful children who had not seen anything like what we do for the season. It was fun to watch their excitement at making a Christmas list and shopping for others. Their eagerness to open the next door on the advent calendar. Their questions about stockings and what might be in them. Their impatience waiting for our adult children to arrive so we could start opening presents. Their questions about what would happen next as we ventured off to the next family event. To them it was all a gift.
My adult children and their significant others jumped in and bought presents for their new siblings and made appropriate exclamations of thanks as they opened their gifts. We visited, ate and played together! I am thankful that they continue to come home and share in our traditions as they forge their own lives. Our Christmas was good!
I have enjoyed the many pictures of other peoples’ Christmas events on Facebook and Instagram and enjoyed the different expressions of the season. The pictures of many generations gathered together to celebrate, the different meals and games, the stories of children who received that one thing that made them shout with excitement (or cry tears of joy!). I see the magic that Christmas can be. What was your best gift this year?
It is incredibly humbling to celebrate the birth of our Saviour each year and reflect on the changes that life has brought. Last year at this time we were still puzzling out what life would look like as both of us were unemployed and we were just starting the process of becoming a licensed foster home. Little did we know how quickly things would move and how normal this year would feel with these two kids!
What a gift for us to share the wonder of the season and all that it encompasses with these children who would not have had anything like it unless we were Foster Parents!
If you are at a season of life where you have some room in your home and your heart I wonder if you should have a look at being a Foster Parent? Or maybe you can come along side someone else who is fostering and be an extended family to them. We would not be doing this as well as we are without the love and support of our extended family and friends! Maybe next Christmas you will enjoy the gift of wonder through the eyes of a child who needs what your family has to offer. Maybe you are the gift that someone else needs for next year?
In the midst of the mess,