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Monday, December 19, 2011

The Great Exchange


How do I describe the holidays in a life like mine?  It is hard to put into words.  Pain and joy are interwoven in a pattern unique to this season of my life.   

The thread of thankfulness.  I thank God I have a reason to shop this year.   We buy the girls a few toys.   I ask Cameron if he can believe they are almost a year old.  His voice faltering, he says, “They saved our lives.”   I am caught by his answer.  Surprised at the deep truth popping so unexpectedly from his quivering lips.  A throbbing thankfulness shoots across my heart…

The thread of aching.  One morning on the way to work I hurt so badly that it is physical.  A knife ripping through my chest.  Venomous thoughts tear through my mind.  A crushing desire for everyone to hurt this way so I won’t be alone in this bizarre alternate reality of holiday horror.   As if it would lessen my pain.   I hate that I can have these wicked thoughts.  I know why they say hurting people hurt people.   I picture the whole world in this pain, and it seems that everything would fall into chaos and darkness.   And I retreat away from such terrible thoughts in haste.  Repenting as I run…

The thread of blessing.  Gifts of time and thoughtfulness and little red dresses and rainbow scarves and green sunshine (for those who know :).  A rope into this dark pit.   A way to climb up into the light of brighter thoughts.  My husband looks at me and says, “God must really love you.”  Ironic words.  It seems to me.   Since she is gone.  But somehow true.  I think of the song we used to sing often with her…“Good, Good Daddy.”  And all around me the blessings shout that He is good still.  Even in the rain...

The thread of joy.  Yes, there are moments.  Moments of merry.  Humming Christmas tunes under my breath.  Chistmas is different now.  There is no anticipation.   No countdown to a special date.  The joy is not in the coming of the day, but in the now…  Christmas is now.    In this breath I celebrate the giving of a child to die.  A gift I can say with absolute certainty I would never have given.  My child for some miserable sinner?  My little love in exchange for even the most wonderful person?  A trade I would surely never make.  I did not have a choice and neither did Makiah.  But God the Daddy did.  And Jesus the Son did.  He exchanged glory for rags… my rags.  For this one capable of lashing out in painful, wicked thoughts.  For this one who so desperately wants to have a Christmas with her little blonde haired daughter with the curly pigtails and the sparkling green eyes.  For this one who would surely spend eternity in wretchedness and pain  if it had not been for the great exchange.  Him for me.   I take it.   And I have hope that this tangled ball of threads that is my life will be made into something more perfect in the end…

Will you take it?  The great exchange?   No need to wait for some special day.  Eternity lingers all around us.  It is offered to each of us you know…

Makiah Singing Good Good Daddy with her babysitter... a reminder in her own voice... left for her mommy... 


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