Right now, in the midst of trying to capture the wonder, it’s more like caught in the weary.
Ever been in that place where things were going along just fine – then suddenly without warning everything is a tangled mess. How easily we wound one another. Even unintentionally. Because that selfish nature is always there, the constant battle.
Attacks come from without – a world of people bent on having things their way, spiritual warfare bound and determined to destroy God’s children, and then there’s…us. “I have discovered this principle of life—that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong.” (Romans 7:21 NLT)
Odd verse and start for this Christmas season. But I have a feeling I’m not alone in this. Though life has always been a struggle throughout the centuries, I think the constant stress and unrelenting pressure of now is a bit intense. Add to it even something that seems good like a trip, or family event, or holiday – well things can go awry.
I wish I had the answer to the question we’re asking: how can the mess be erased, and the hurt caused be forgotten?
Maybe it can’t, maybe it won’t. But here’s another truth, God can use it all. Will use it all. “Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.” (Colossians 3:13 NLT)
This is the learning ground, the hard stuff playing field where lots of bruises and breaks will happen. And all the admonitions from God about forgiveness are valid, just not easy.
It goes back to this: if you were the hurter and not the one hurt, what would you want them to know? For me it’s this: ‘I’m still a work in progress, I still do stupid, and with all my heart I did not intend to hurt your heart.’
So, as we make the trek toward the Savior – whom angels announced, who entered our world when daily greed and grief was all too real, who experienced these same things while in the flesh – perhaps the trek itself is a gift. A daily learning of how fallen we are and how desperately we need not only Jesus in the manger, but the Prince of Peace on the cross. The gift we’ll open will be a someday life of no more hurts. That’s very merry indeed.
“For a child is born to us, a son is given to us. The government will rest on His shoulders. And He will be called: Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” (Isaiah 9:6 NLT)
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