“Spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday” (Isaiah 58:10)
Night to noonday, that cannot come fast enough.
Traveling is exhausting. When we had a short trip, for work, a mere 3 hours away, Taylor and I booked a hotel. That was a wise decision as we were exhausted.
Taylor and I are trying to figure out this holiday thing that is on the horizon. It stinks to dread that they are coming closer EVERY DAY. Ugh. Back in July or August, as we were experiencing the dread of Archie’s birthday, I was determined to not have these awful, uncomfortable feelings, ruin the rest of our year. I began searching for inexpensive things Taylor and I could do to #1 look forward and #2 prepare for difficulties on the horizon. I found a couple.
Someone had mentioned a Christmas store in Michigan that focused the Christmas holiday on Christ to Taylor a year or two ago. Our family of three made a mental note to fit that in, someday. I wish we would not have scheduled so much on that day as I still cannot find “someday” on my calendar!
This weekend Taylor and I were blessed with the opportunity to take a one day bus trip through a local radio station. The price was right and they would be doing the 3.5-4 hours of driving each way. The most exciting opportunity was that they would be stopping at the Christmas store we had been wanting to go visit! We don’t/didn’t need to buy anything, we just needed to remember that this blessed upcoming holiday is more than just another spotlight on the hole in our hearts that “Dad is missing.” Does that make sense?
We had a good time. First we stopped at an outlet mall. Not our thing, but they did have a chocolate outlet store, so it wasn’t a complete misuse of our time ;). Then off to Frankenmuth, MI, a very touristy German town. Taylor and I loved the covered bridge, the architecture, historical info. posted around town, and the river running beside the old mill. We grabbed cheese and sausage combos for a quick German lunch, then spent the 2 hours meandering, taking pictures.
Off to Bronners, HOOOOO!
With late departures throughout the trip, this left less than an hour. Though we only made it through half the store (that was at high speed without stopping to “shop”), honestly, it was about enough for one day. On our grief journey, we have yet to reach the point of “restored endurance.” What that means is: we poop out a lot easier than we ever dreamed.
The following day it was our marathon of The Closer and a comment was made that sat Taylor upright: “You know that moment when you feel like Christmas is on it’s way? I don’t have that.”
All the Christmas decorations, music, carriage rides with bells and lights, still…nothing.
“Spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, ”
I cannot get that out of my mind, but I’m not sure what to do with it. I asked Taylor what she thought of going to the hospital on Christmas to visit people who cannot be home, but she gave me the squishy face. Too soon. The hospital is full of painful memories that are too fresh to find comfort in walking their halls.
Soup kitchen? I checked that one last year. They have all the volunteers for Christmas day booked way in advance.
I don’t have the answer for this one. All I know is that this Christmas is going to be like non-other and can go in one of two ways: we can easily focus on the mountain of loss we’ve sustained this year, or seek out others who have gaps that we were put on this earth to fill.
Which path do you think we should walk? Could you point us in the right direction, because I have no idea how to get there. How about doing us one better? Ask our heavenly Dad on our behalf. He’s listening.
Until tomorrow: Blessings!