I forgot what we did the Christmas we were last with my mama.
It startled me, my forgetting and then I remembered.
I remembered the beauty, her beauty that day.
I reflected on how things felt tragic and unusual; but, so very special.
Tomorrow begins Advent, something I know so very little of if you consider scripture and scholar as basis for my knowing.
Tomorrow begins with hope and hope is meant to cause our contemplations, to give notice of our waiting.
I’ve arranged my Advent cards, not the place before, not the grand garland the width of our fireplace.
Instead, a corner dimly lit and a chest of drawers I got from my mama’s. The top of it cleared to be adorned with hydrangea stem stained mason jars, now containers for bright tiny ornaments.
The backdrop, an abstract ocean piece painted by my daughter, the cards looped with copper wire and positioned in a peak and valley sort of way.
I’ll glance that way, have been since I couldn’t let be til it was done and finished late night last week.
It’s a simple arranging of Advent decoration.
More hopeful than before it seems. No daily task of studious examination of each day’s card.
I’ll not do this this year.
Instead, I’ll love its entirety.
I’ll enjoy it as is.
This Christmas, I pray and prayed this morning.
“Remind me of you, Jesus”
“May I remind those around me of you.”
May my gentleness be evident, so much so evident, one may sense
The Lord is near.
I texted my cousin, the one who gifted me with the Advent Cards, a surprise two years past.
Told her I loved her, wished her traveling mercy and grace.
She thanked me, said “oh, thank you dear Lisa for being in my life.”
And strange you may think, my strange reply I replied
to which she answered, “Amen”.
Let it be, Jesus. Let it be Jesus in me, my December prayer. Me
So, the first Sunday of December says be still.
To consider hope.
To gaze upon our pretty spaces and places and find it there, in our midst, our hope.
Our hope that was born in a place hidden and curious, but long ago ordained by God.
A place surrounded by a starry sky you and I’ve most likely not seen the likes of.
May I never lose that wonder.
May I ever hope for the wondrous wonder of Christmas, of Christ.
May I linger unlabored there.
Looking upon reminders of my hope.
And memories recalled and cherished even more, strangely hopeful now despite the sorrow that accompanies them.
It’s all wonder.
It’s hope and it’s grace that’s brought me thus far, to here, to now to celebrate Christmas untainted by sorrow and more painted in soft colors of hope.
“The sun will no more be your light by day, nor will the brightness of the moon shine on you, for the Lord will be your everlasting light, and your God will be your glory.
Your sun will never set again, and your moon will wane no more; the Lord will be your everlasting light, and your days of sorrow will end.”
Isaiah 60:19-20 NIV
You as well, I hope and pray are
Hopeful this Christmas.