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Unexpected Christmas Joy…


Our Christmas Tree ~ On a Silent Night...

Our Christmas Tree ~ On a Silent Night...

Nehemiah 8:10

10 Then he said to them, “Go your way, eat the fat, drink the sweet, and send portions to those for whom nothing is prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. Do not sorrow, for the joy of the LORD is your strength.”

I experience some “God” things this Christmas season. The experiences produced unexpected Joy in my Christmas celebration!

It goes to show you that when, like a child, you cannot fathom a thing God will show it to you. The heart of a child, the bible says, is one of the things God the Father looks for in each of us [don’t know the particular scripture, I’ll have to find it!].  Even the broken heart of the child will be honored, in all of us.

Christmas has been an issue for me for as long as I can remember. Yes, I know that the expectation of negative experiences will produce negative experiences. Heck, even those who believe themselves pagans know that. This year was vastly different.

I misjudged some occurances from a week before the Christmas celebration. In my home group the women confronted me about my issues with my mother and my feelings about her and her mental illness. I was already very uncomfortable with the festive atmosphere. And what felt like confrontation made me angry. I attempted to remain silent and get through the meeting, but they kind of required response. I explained that I had made the efforts to seperate myself from my family due to the harm it does us all. Now I was supposed to cut my mother a break, well my understanding of that felt like stepping back into the frey. I was confused. Anger always brings with it confusion, ever notice that? So I steeled myself and tried to explain that I loved my mom and was doing my best. I just did not see my mother choosing to receive her healing from God.

I know that we choose to believe God and we choose to receive from God. My mother has consistantly insisted that her mental illness made her unique and special. She insisted on remaining  ill. Often times refusing her medication. Well that refusal caused much harm to her children, when they [we] were little.

So back to the JOY…{much more fun!}

My Mother called the Saturday before Christmas…my mother doesn’t call her children, we are horrible children and are expected to contact her to prove our love. Well! She called me…the subject was not a good one but some good things occurred:

She was lucid and as kind as she is able, when she is trying to tell me her feelings were hurt by me. She referred to me in good child terms [a bit too over the top terms], and I was only mildly repulsed by it.

I handled the conversation like a normal person. I only answered the questions I felt were necessary. I am an adult and am allowed to make decisions about the dessemination of my personal things, I reason to myself. I did not get emotional, not even angry. The conversation was held without incident.

What did God show me?  He showed me that He is bigger and can perform miraculous things with people that we [me] in our humanity cannot see happening. My mother was lucid, she called me.

Both the hand of God !!

Seeing Lucid

Seeing Lucid

A blessing really. Although I am ambivalent about the conversations, I am glad that the happened. That is not to say that I desire to speak to my mother on a weekly basis. However, by His hand God has proven bigger than what I can see or fathom! So we will see.

Then there was our Christmas tree. Like I said about the Christmas atmosphere at my home group, I have a real aversion to holiday decorations, especially Christmas decorations.

However, this year, for the first time that I can remember, I did not hate the tree. In fact I think it is pretty, especially at night !

Again a gift from God. I enjoyed the tree this year. I sound like a crazy woman I know!

The best gift this year was for my husband! He always wants the same boring gifts. Handkerchiefs [cloth], thermals, socks and jeans. There is never anything special. Well God took care of that for us!

His son called Christmas, with his sister’s phone number! My husband had not heard from his daughter for three years. This gift was one that could not have been purchased and the only thing that made it better was that it was his son who gave it to him. His, our, older children live in Alaska where their mother lives. So contact is impossible if they choose to avoid it.

God is good and faithful to fulfill the desires of our hearts! And man did He get my husband!

This made Christmas joy…all of these things, and more! I guess this is how normal people enjoy Christmas. I was always just happy that the day had come and gone. This was so much more than that.

Christmas eve was spent at home with the other two boys. No fighting no strife! We enjoyed leftover pizza and White Diamond Hamburgers! A north Jersey treat, unique and loved!

The White Diamond of Clark, NJ...Click and check the link!
The White Diamond of Clark, NJ…Click and check the link!
Famous White Diamond Burger!
Famous White Diamond Burger!

My husband boss brought them from Clark for the lunch on Christmas eve! The guys all reign from the Clark area and only Eddie still lives there…he brought it back for them. A Christmas treat for all!

Then we watched some tv…A Christmas Carol {1938} my husband’s favorite version…we were up until 2 AM…but we were all just hanging out! All the work was complete and we were able to enjoy Christmas Eve together…
Again, a gift from God!
All in all it was a really wonderful Christmas, even for me.
I have to give all the credit and honor to God, for fulfilling the desires of our hearts. Honoring our obedience and knowing the exact things that each of us needed to get through this, the Celebration of His Son’s birthday.
My favorite gift? I got the Nikon D60! I did not ask this, I only dreamed it. I never even really told my husband that I wanted it…just one mention weeks ago that it was a cool camera! I just wrote it off as something I could have…someday…
God is Good! All the time!
Hope all of your Christmas’ were as Joyful!

Author: Hopeannfaith

Welcome, I'm Andrea ... HOPEannFAITH ... I write and take pictures as a way of expression. These are gifts given by a loving and indulgent Father, to a headstrong and stubborn daughter, with much to say. A semi-retired social worker/secretary, I now call myself a writer. I've published one internet article and written many blog posts. However, publishing does not make one a writer, anymore than taking a box camera to the park makes one a photographer. What makes one who and what they are? Well God for one ... formed me before the foundations of this world (Psalm 139); and many, many years after putting away my passion for wordsmithing and picture taking He gave it back ... in droves. I am a culmination of my choices and experiences. It is here that my experiences color the world in print and color. It is my goal to reach just one soul a day with love ... encouragement ... understanding or just letting that soul know that they are not alone where they are today. This is about creating ~ all of it. Creating a HOLY and SACRED place where the ugly truth can be healed and the beauty of a moment or a tear can brighten a day for the experience. Why HOPEannFAITH? Hopeannfaith is my inner child, and she is maturing, as she should have done all along. She is learning all about how Faith fulfills Hope. She is learning how to live. HOPEannFAITH ~ the wonder twins all wrapped up in one, me. These are my Journey Journals ~ written and visual. I welcome your company. I welcome your friendships. My Journey is in the light ~ although I have and will share the shadowy corners and the dark ~ so you know that you are never alone there. If we hold hands in the dark, and we walk, side by side, through the shadow, we will reach the Light together. In relationship with one another and with the Light. Blessings.

2 thoughts on “Unexpected Christmas Joy…

  1. Pingback: Unexpected Christmas Joy… |

  2. Pingback: Food on Fridays: Thick and Chewy, Fast and Easy Pizza Dough « Ann Kroeker

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