At Home on a White Christmas

Watching the Star

So I’m up at 6:00 a.m., and by 7:00 the snow flakes are an inch thick. Probably one of the two or three times in my life where Christmas morning has been picture postcard perfect. No need to dream of a white Christmas, because it’s here. Having my first cup of coffee, sounds of Anjie just now stirring, and thinking of what the next season of life will bring. Amy and Daniel will return to their respective colleges, the nuttiness of this December will pass, and it will be back to full-steam at the church, madly preparing for the ACU class (Arts and Culture: A Christian Aesthetic) which begins on Jan. 4th, and then there’s the Willow Creek Community Church project I’ve taken on which will make the first quarter of the year a bit harrowing, but exciting nonetheless.

But in this moment, as the furnace rumbles back on, as the street lamp outside the front window clicks on and off every few minutes, as the thump of footsteps signals someone thinking about getting serious about this Christmas gift business, I am somehow back at home. Sometimes you don’t even know you’ve been gone. The past couple of weeks, on two different occasions, I’ve found myself at my upstairs desk, first piddling, then working, then looking up an hour later and realizing a certain familiar comfort has entered the room, and it’s hard to identify, but it’s surely the former hours of writing the novels and plays coming to visit, complaining that I haven’t been there lately. And I say, yeah, I know. But, I say, don’t worry, I’m headed back. A few stories are percolating, some old, some new, and though the time isn’t yet quite right, it will be soon

Emotions are fluctuating wildly these days, and why I don’t keep the deep quiet of early mornings a iron-clad priority is beyond me. I love this…I could not be more grateful for life, for what the coming of the Christ has meant to the world (thought I’m not always sure we have it’s meaning down pat), and for my family and friends. I miss my Mom and my sister this holiday–they’re Christmasing in Texas–but I’m so grateful for this, the first Christmas with the kids home from college. Last night, we sat late into the night chatting and singing and asking silly questions from a book called The Christmas Question, a conversation starter sort of thing. Amy laughed and Daniel grinned and Anjie dozed and I plucked old songs. Finally we gave it up and went to sleep.

Snow’s done, looks like. Anjie’s (or Santa, depending….) putting out a few last minute presents, and the dining room light just came on. Time to start to move. We’ll do the gift thing, then head to Enumclaw for the annual Meal Incredible at my brother-in-law’s house. The sadness that’s been nipping at me lately is dormant, and I could not be more blessed.

Nothing but thankful…

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