Monday, December 22, 2008

Winter Morning

It is a cold morning with a fire that needs to be coaxed back to life after being neglected throughout the night. The floors are cold enough that you can feel the chill right through my thick wool socks. Instead of a robe, I have on a hooded sweatshirt, it feels better.
It feels more like January cold. Last night while doing chores, a coyote ran right out of the woods by the corner of the pasture. It was still light out so we got a good look at her. She was no more than 40 feet from where my friend Debbie was standing, and for a city girl, that was quite a moment. The coyotes have been yipping loudly most nights lately, and they are close.
There is a mounting feeling of excitement as Christmas approaches. I must admit to be like a child come this time of the year. Wondering what is under the tree...anticipation of how this or that gift will be enjoyed. But also there is a deep and profound sense of peace that fills me, as if this is the time of the year when goodness bubbles up from the surface of mankind and you can see kindness taking front row seat in so many places. It is a year when many folks are financially strapped, but from this is coming a renewal of something old and good. The value of the smaller things in life. The value of a well planned gift that has less to do with money and more to do with giving from the heart. I think in many ways, this recession has given us more than it has taken.
Suddenly we understand that spending what you don't have, doesn't work in the long run and that many of the children are spoiled and need to learn to be inventive in play. More have learned once again the value of hand made gifts and that price has so little to do with real giving.
Many are also learning that thinking big and living larger than life, can steal real security from you.
Our family has learned from Mei-Ling that there is something so much more valuable than what you own in the material world. Life is the greatest gift of all. Even this holiday, the celebration of the birth of Jesus is really about that very same thing. It was his life that has led so many to a life with meaning and according to Jesus, it doesn't matter how much stuff you own, how well your table is decorated or how big your house is, but what does matter is how much you love and share that love.
Its time for me to bundle up against the cold and head out the door to do chores. On my mind as I do these things will be how blessed I am to have so much love in my life. To wake up knowing my husband and I believe we have the greatest love on earth and to know my children like to spend time with us and love us as deeply as we love them, and now to know we have grandchildren that are reaching their little arms out to us to be picked up for a hug and a kiss. To know that inside the walls of my house there is peace and contentment. To know that friends feel at home and can stop by unannounced and be welcomed as if nothing else mattered at that moment. This winter morning, there is so much to be thankful for. Life is good.
Colossians 3:13 Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.


Morning's Minion said...

I am envious that you have cardinals--I enjoyed their flash of scarlett at my bird feeders in VT. We do have Flickers--which many consider a menace--but they are beautiful.

Dana and Daisy said...

there is so much wisdom in that post, Patty.

mary said...

Merry Christmas dear Patty! Enjoy your week with your sweet family.

Williams Arena said...

Peace and contentment can't be bought. Unfortunately too many people have wasted a lot of money only to find that their "things" don't bring any lasting joy.

True peace and contentment come from Christ. He provides perfect peace... a peace that isn't dependent on your surroundings or situation.

Merry Christmas to you and your family.

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