Saturday, December 27, 2008

A sweet spirit

This year it was my intention to keep Christmas simple. I did very little shopping and decided to focus all energy on making a festive and memorable day for my family without the commercial influence as much as possible. We did end up with much more under the tree than I would have liked, but mainly the goal was accomplished.

My Mom came and is sleeping upstairs as I type. I can't tell you how much we treasure our children's only Grandparent left. We had a wonderful home cooked meal of Citrus herb turkey, apple sage dressing, holiday corn pudding, fresh fruit, and more seasonal favorites. After dinner, we watched old videos of Christmas's past, the birth of John David, Elizabeth's 'Gotcha' day in China and many other memories. I would look over from time to time as we were watching them all and see tears trickling down my Moms cheek. It was really the first time we watched anything that had my Dad in it who passed away not long ago.

Our son John memorized much of Luke Chapter 2 and this was his gift to his Grandmother. He drew a picture of the manger scene on a card for her, wrapped it up, and then when she unwrapped on Christmas day he jumped up and stood in front of the fire and recited it. What a joy it was to hear his precious sweet voice and knowing these verses will be tucked in his heart for the rest of his life.

I realized that time is passing so quickly. Life changes unexpectedly and we never know what the next year will bring forth.

I can't help but feel a sense of urgency to stay even closer to our Heavenly Father as we enter such an uncertain time in 2009. Our family's goal this year will be to focus ever so strongly on Him as we travel along the path God lays before us.


Susan Stevenson said...

Thank you for your kind comment in my journal, Susan. My mood has lifted considerably since my sad start to Christmas Day.

Your celebration sounds beautiful, and especially the time spent with your mom. Our life here on earth is so brief, and often we don't appreciate the little things. If anything, Christmas reminds me to cherish the people around me, and the memories I have of those who aren't.

Many joyous blessings to you and yours in 2009.

Michael and Starla said...

That is very touching. It reminds us of the innocence of children and that we all should spend time putting the Word locked into our heart. I hope to make some new commitments this next year and if children can do it, then why can't I?

kris said...

what a warm and beautiful christmas you shared.

Anonymous said...

How right you are! Hope the new year is happy for you and full of more moments to treasure.

Erin said...

Everything you wrote in this post touched and inspired me, Susan. May your family be blessed this year with much joy. I am mindful too, that each Christmas we have with those we love is a gift... indeed each day. Your John is a thoughtful and loving child to give his grandmother such a precious gift. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Janelle said...

lovely! my family also downsized our giving and gifting...still seemed like A LOT of LOOT! Thanks for the ideas of how you spent your time making it meaningful. So impressed at the Bible memorization - what a gift he will have fovever!

God bless your New Year with health, peace, and joy!

Lori said...

What a beautiful Christmas you favorite part of your post was your son memorizing scripture. I can't think of anything more important than our kids hiding God's Word in their hearts...and we as parents certainly need to do the same.

Thanks for sharing your very special Christmas with us!

Mom To Six said...

What a beautiful post! Family is so important to us, especially as you said, as we head into times of uncertainty.

May God continue to watch over all of us and may the hope of Christmas be with us all year long.



Kim said...

What a sweet time with your family! I am so sorry about your father--that must make the Christmas season a bittersweet time...rejoicing that your dad is in heaven singing praises to God...but, still missing him greatly and watching as your mother mourns her great loss! May the Lord comfort you all through this time.

I understand what you mean about cherishing each moment...I have really been thinking along those lines this last year and now at the beginning of a new year, I know that is where God has my heart.

Thanks for sharing this.