Sunday, December 23, 2012

Savoring the Season

I'm enjoying the best of the season's beauty and reflecting on thoughts and inspirations during this advent time.  Just to share a few:

*Taking in a concert at Goshen College, the small Christian college where I work, was awesome.  The various choirs from the school and a children's community choir performed in a state of the art concert hall on campus.  The sound was majestic and when the orchestra, the trained choirs and we the audience blended our voices to sing a few select carols it was truly a worshipful experience.  We have been created  with the capacity to make music.  He has done all things well.

*Blogs have been uplifting and thought provoking.  Carey Scott did a 3 day series on the Mary and Martha story from the gospels challenging us women to choose the better thing in the midst of the necessary preparations. There is a place for both taking time out just to sit in His presence and ignore the urgent,  and serving well with planning and hard work.  It isn't always one or the other, but seizing the moments that are nudging us towards him, within the distractions.  It's about  responding to his whisper, his reminders, his call to notice the beauty in the activity and his image imprinted in the ones we serve. How I want to respond like this! To never be so far into the multi-tasking performance that I miss the cues for when to pause.

Another devotional reminded me that this Lover of our Souls sings over us as a mother sings a lullaby over her young child.  What a sweet picture to mentally hug during these busy days!   

*The newsletters and photo cards that come in the mail are like my first cup of coffee in the morning, warm, satisfying and arresting.  Shared stories of your year and photos that display friendly faces make me smile and bring your presence close. One of the messages on a photo card reads, "The magic of Christmas is not in the presents, but in His presence".  Thank you, for the reminder!

*Buying gifts when the money goes towards a ministry or the items bought are made by under priviledged women who will profit through the sale allows me a small way to give twice--to them and the one I'm buying the gift for.  This year I supported Destiny Rescue, a missions organization that rescues children from human trafficking and exploitation.  About a year ago, I was challenged to choose a prayer project that was outside of my world of experience and this grievous evil became my focus.  My prayers feel like a drop in the bucket, but I know they are mighty in pulling down strongholds.

Many women receive a second chance at life through a local ministry that gives them education and employment.  The soup mix I bought was personally bagged by 'Kezia'. Give me many places to share your love and hope this year, Father.

*New recipes,  a cookie exchange, a Christmas meal prepared for us, tried-and-true-traditional snacks and food to share with neighbors and friends makes the heart merry and the palate zing with flavor.  (One of those tried and true recipes can be found here)  What would celebrations be without special foods for feasting and grazing? Thank you, Father for the gift of taste and for the communion that happens when we share food together.

*A December wedding found us traveling 4 hours from home to witness the ceremony.  The ethereal church setting had a tiered stage, a piano on one side and an organ playing tandem on the other side.  Regal and majestic were words that came to mind as I heard and felt the music.  Vows were spoken, symbols exchanged and a kiss sealed the deal.  We smiled and cheered and I squeezed Kevin's hand remembering similar promises we had made to each other years ago.  I felt part of a Holy Spirit conspiracy as the pastor spoke the final benediction from Numbers 6,
24 “The Lord bless you
    and keep you;
25 the Lord make his face shine on you
    and be gracious to you;
26 the Lord turn his face toward you
    and give you peace", 
the same closing I had written in the wedding card I intended to give them.  Father, thank you for creating marriage.  While your advent the first time fills us with joy, it will pale in comparison to your second coming and the grand gala planned for the wedding between us! I wait for you, my bridegroom. 

What treasures are you finding in this year's Christmas holiday? May you be drawn ever closer to Him.

Merry Christmas!


  1. beautiful post Ruth...wishing you a safe...peaceful and fun Christmas....

  2. This is such a beautiful post! Blog land was filled with holiday inspiration, wasn't it? Hope you and your family had a lovely Christmas!


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