Forty Three, Green, and Merry Christmas

Today, my Preacher Man turns 43. I wish I could tell you we did something spectacular for him but he pitches a fit every year if we buy him anything because it’s close to Christmas and being the kind of guy he is, he figures money used on him could have been spent on the kids. Since he’s much happier with the latter we don’t rock the boat. Sam and I did sneak off to buy him a shirt but that was about the extent of the gift giving. The real gift of the day is that our family is provided for and protected by a man full of integrity, one who loves his wife and kids, who makes me laugh harder than anyone on this planet, and who takes seriously his calling to the Body of Christ. So when I think about it, it feels more like my birthday. I’m so grateful for you, Luke. So very grateful.

Right now I am in the midst of making cole slaw and green beans for a family gathering tonight. Oh, and I forgot to mention guacamole. Because apparently I’ve been charged with all of the green elements of the dinner. And what, you don’t eat guacamole with your cole slaw and green beans? No matter how much it doesn’t go, it seems we can never get away from having at least one thing Mexican at every gathering so guacamole and green beans it is.

I only have just a short minute to leave the green preparations and  jump on here but I wanted to express from the bottom of my heart how very grateful I am for this community. Whether you be a preacher’s wife or not, the friendships and connections made here have been so unexpected and yet have become so very necessary to me. 2010 has been one of the most difficult years of our ministerial life. I’ve not written as much as I would have liked because people I love are going through things so hard. So terribly hard. Those things have consumed me too and yet I’m not at liberty to process that here or anywhere for that matter. I could have lightened up and written about the trivial but truth is that life isn’t always funny and when it’s not it seems a farce to try to play it off that way. So I’ve been quiet but you’ve still come around when I have found words. Thank you for that. Please don’t stop. As many of us do, I’m praying for some fresh zeal in 2011. Many personal things may remain unresolved but God has reminded me so many times the past couple of months that there is a marked end to all our sufferings. To the extent we join with Christ in our calamities we will also experience unexpected peace and maybe, just maybe, even some flat out joy.

Merry Christmas to you, my friends. I pray Immanuel infiltrates and permeates all you do in this season of celebration.