I listen to Christmas music all throughout the year, but when the 31st of October hits it's full on Christmas music in our house, van, my computer, and anywhere else I can turn it on. It never gets old to me. This is the most wonderful time of the year, as the song states, but my heart is so heavy and I find tears too often the last few days.
The day before Thanksgiving two sweet families I know experienced tragedy and loss. They were both enjoying a nice week off from work and school and weren't expecting what came to them. Our family is continually praying for both situations and my mind has been racing with so many thoughts. Why does it take unexpected events for me to stop and re-evaluate what I'm doing with my life? I rush through each day, fill my schedule with too much, live in stress, buy too much, get easily frustrated with the kids, waste too much time, and it goes on and on.
We stopped before bedtime last night to begin the first of our Advent readings. Hope is the theme this week. How appropriate for these last few days. I asked Sawyer if he knew what hope meant, and like all good mothers we asked SIRI to tell us the Webster's definition. We received a lot of info from SIRI, but what it came down to was this, Hope is - to place confidence; to trust with confident expectation of good. We ended our reading with thanking God that he is our unchanging HOPE, and that we get to live our life with purpose because we are confident in the expectation of good from Him.
Life is hard. The unexpected and confusing happens way too often, and at any moment it can be my family dealing with tragedy and loss again. But then comes HOPE. HOPE that makes me pray that God will bring comfort, peace, endurance, and answers for these families. HOPE that reminds me to slow down during Christmas and really listen to the words of the music I play, to live in moments fully present without rushing to the next, to hug people more, to be slow in anger, forgive quickly, to put others needs before mine, and to be patient with my kids constant requests for having needs met.
I will be more aware of my HOPE in Christ this week and more willing to share it with those who don't understand it or need to be reminded of the HOPE they possess. I will live in HOPE and not fear.