Friday, December 18, 2015

First Christmas Without Her

This is our first year celebrating Christmas with my mother-in-love, Mary. Last Christmas, we were all with her and Mike took a precious group picture with her. She was ready even then for her heavenly home. Then in late January she left us. So many are missing loved ones for the first time this year. Some are remembering family that  left long ago. Missing them remains a lifetime because the love we shared was a big piece of us.

I am blessed to have my Mom with me this Christmas. There are no guarantees for any of us that this won't be our last holiday to spend together. So treasure these moments. Don't sweat the small details of making the season perfect. For when it comes down to it, the memories are of time spent together not the perfect gift or the most delicious meal. Take time for laughter.

Jesus praised Mary for sitting beside him and scolded Martha for rushing around to get everything done. Having a Mary heart in a Martha world is not only a title of a book but what we should strive for this Christmas. Time for those connections with others is precious. I am going to try a bit harder this year not to waste it.

Since I am in an advice giving mood I need to share one more thing I am guilty of. Get in the pictures. Too often I feel self conscious and make an excuse to have the pictures taken with out me. I didn't put on makeup, my hair is a mess, I am too chubby, these are just a few of the excused. Other families like ours spend time going through pictures when there is a death. Last year Ron, Deb and Paul spent hours going through pictures to make a video of their mom. We are grateful that she didn't avoid getting her picture taken. All we really need in any picture is to adorn ourselves with a smile. That is enough. The love in our eyes not the state of our hair is what we see when looking at photos.

This year we will be missing those whose smiles are no longer in our pictures. The reality of them spending Christmas in Jesus' arms is comforting. Missing them is still so hard this time of year.

In Him,

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