Thursday, December 23, 2004


For me, Christmas is often a time for deep reflection. I'm big on using the week between December 25th and January 1st to evaluate the year, to pray, to reconcile, to make plans and set vision for what might be coming in the new year. This year is no exception - just a little more hurt, a little more regret than I'm used to.

  • I am thankful for family - it's been a really good year to get to know my brother a little better, to use him as a sounding board for my venting and to let him be straight up and tell me what I need to hear. Our parents have been there for us in this transtion time, too - and even with the problems that come with family members, there's a sense that we're not in this alone, you know? I want to pass that on to our children: that we love each other, that we respect each other, and that we want to urge each other towards greater things. Family does stuff like that.

  • I remember fondly Christmases and winters past, when we went skiing or skidding on the snow-covered roads, or staff Christmas parties while watching the news, or carolling and getting yelled at for waking folks up: "I'll call the cops! Y'all get out of here!" It's been a long time since I had one of "those" conversations, the kind that's deeper than either of you imagine, filled with more questions than answers, more mystery than fact. I used to dream more - I'm finding that I'm not full of dreams, not full of the confidence I once had. Might be a good thing, but cynicism isn't the best replacement character trait for hopefulness, is it?

  • I'm really grateful for new friends, even as old friends seem that much more dear, too. We've gotten involved with some really good people who are really seeking after Christ and living their lives accordingly. Of course it's taking time, and it should, to really feel a part of it all. But the people are making the transition and continuing journey that much easier and more rewarding.

  • I'm finding it very very comforting that God forgives, and discovering fresh and new that this character trait is passed on to us towards others in Jesus Christ. Because God came - because Christmas is more meaningful than the sentimentality, and it's real and full of evil and ulitmate good - we are forgiven and can in turn forgive others. There is always another chance to do the right thing, another opportunity with God to make things right. I can only appreciate that in screwing up and in making messes. But it holds true, and we can sleep at night with clear consciences before Him because of the obedience and sacrifice and life-well-lived by our Lord.


    Blogger Porkchop said...

    The end of the year always holds two different emotions for me, the time when I have that icky-squirmy feeling where I look back at all those INCREDIBLY stupid things I did. And reflection of how far I have come and changed.

    Just remember to keep it balanced.

    23/12/04 4:11 PM  
    Blogger Rick said...

    thanks for that. yeah, we've come a long way this past year, too - just a rougher road than we'd hoped, you know?

    24/12/04 10:04 AM  

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