Welcome December! It's hard to believe that it's already the most wonderful time of the year. I love Christmas time. I love the music, the lights, the traditions, the foods, the parties, the time with family, the cold weather, the stockings hung by the chimney with care. . . I could really go on and on and make quippy song quote after song quote. But I'm sure most of you are already busily making merry yourselves, rocking around the Christmas tree as you go throughout your days.
Ok, you all know that I love tradition and history. I was always the kid that wanted to know the story behind the story. I was the kid that wanted to know why we put up the tree, why we eat candy canes, what in the world are the 12 days of Christmas and why would anyone give their true love four calling birds? You're probably thinking, "Your poor parents." I'm pretty sure they would have utilized google a lot if it had been around during my formative years. My curiosity is why I eventually went on to study history in college. Yep, I chose my college major because I like research. It's a huge part of my make up. So Christmas is really my cup of tea. There are a lot of fun, poignant, symbolic, and historic traditions wrapped up into these days of December. Let's start with Advent.
The first of December marks the beginning of Advent and the start of the liturgical year for the church (technically it began last Sunday). Advent celebrates the wait leading up to the birth of Christ. I think it's a beautiful sentiment that the year begins with waiting in eager anticipation rather than the actual event. As children (and adults) count down the days until Christmas, we remember with joy the wait for the long expected Savior.
In our church (and many others), we light a candle each Sunday of Advent. This last Sunday, we lit the candle of Hope. I've thought a lot about hope this week. The things I hope for mainly cover family, future unknowns, and tied into those two are Aurelia. I feel like we have so many unknowns with her future. And I feel like her health is the major deciding factor in where we are and what we're doing. There are small moments of worry, but I try not to go down that route. It's a lot to put on the shoulders of a 15 month old. So, instead I hope. I hope for incredible things (like a cure for hydrocephalus), and everyday things (like a restful night). I hope for progress (like crawling), and I hope for answers (like why she can't seem to gain weight). But more than anything, I hope that she will experience and know the love of the little baby, born in a manger, sent to redeem humanity. And hoping for that gives any of my weary worries peace.
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices, for yonder breaks a new and glorious morn!