This is a post I have been thinking about on and off for the past month. It started with the simplest of questions asked in my heart, “What does Christmas mean to you?” All the obvious answers came quickly to mind. This is the day we celebrate the birth of our Savior, the one who makes it possible for me to be alive. Another was time to gather with the family. A time to see friends who are home for Christmas from far away. Yet another in my younger years, Santa comes to visit! This Christmas season has become a time of reflection.
I have been reflecting on the last twenty four years, the good, the bad and the ugly. (My earliest memory was at the age of 3 (?) playing with Phoebe in our yard) I can truly say I have come quite a way with a journey still ahead. At the age of five I would have not picture me at the point I am at today. Going through some old papers from school when I moved this summer, I came across a letter I wrote to myself in middle school. It talked about my dreams and goals I had set for myself to complete before the year 2014. Yes I opened it early to see what I had written.
In that letter is discussed me becoming a pediatrician, having a family and husband. It also talked about what was going on in middle school. In just that short time since being in middle school (10 years) ago how God has already changed my path. At twenty seven, I am a PA, not an MD in family medicine with a big flux of kiddos. Along the lines of my goal, but it a direction I never saw. A direction that is still unfolding before my eyes everyday.
Most of my reflection has been spent on the memories I have made with those in my life. April Frohwein my best friend in elementary school playing house and eating chili. J The passing of my Great Grandma Mary and me playing Amazing Grace on my flute in fifth grade. Many summer memories on Cape Cod playing with my cousins and putting on the AMP Dance Show. J Wartburg College, U-RAH RAH RAH! Three years living in Lincoln – Hx Px, Philadelphia, LCF, ABCs, the Circuit. Gag gifts every Christmas, the addition Ellie, the loss of Marion.
Most of all it is the tidbits of life lessons and advice I will remember most. Tonight as the night was winding down, I laid with my grandfather in bed, warming up grandma’s side for her. It wasn’t a long time but quality most definitely. We talked about this crazy Christmas blizzard to medicine and the fun we have already had today. We even discussed grandpa’s mortality and his last request he has asked of me, to sing at his funeral. What stuck must was he said “I can’t begin to comprehend all of God’s vastness, but I don’t want to. The human body wasn’t made to last, it is just a shell we borrow for a short time while it wears out. Mine is worn out.”
Christmas is to me is first and foremost about and celebrating our Savior, but I live for these moments I get to connect with those I love. And hearing my grandfather talk about his faith with me is a gift I will treasure for the rest of my life. God I thank you for tonight, the snow, my safe arrival and travel home, my family, my friends, my job, and most importantly my grandfather. Thank you for your unwavering love, joy, peace, loyalty and never leaving my side.
“Nevertheless, there will be no more gloom for those who were in distress. In the past he humbled the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, but in the future he will honor Galilee of the Gentiles, by the way of the sea, along the Jordan- The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned. You have enlarged the nation and increased their joy; they rejoice before you as people rejoice at the harvest, as men rejoice when dividing the plunder. For as in the day of Midian’s defeat, you have shattered the yoke that burdens them, the bar across their shoulders, the rod of their oppressor. Every warrior’s boot used in battle and every garment rolled in blood will be destined for burning, will be fuel for the fire. For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the LORD Almighty will accomplish this.”