There are many pleasures to be found in Christmas.
We must be careful to cling to the Substance versus chasing shadows which will leave us empty on December 26th.
The Substance will fill us with joy and peace every day of the year.
This isn’t to say there’s no enjoyment to be found in the life of one of who sticks to Substance. Finding thankfulness in even the shadows is a way to live with gratefulness.
During Christmas, I do find joy in reminiscing about life represented by particular ornaments. And, as I’ll soon be tucking these shadows away for another year, I now express thanksgiving for these reminders of faith, family and love.
A sweetness of memories on a tree.
A keepsake from childhood (Oh, how I adored Holly Hobby. Seriously. I dressed like her.)
A memory of a movie enjoyed with my brother (Remember the doves from Home Alone. We each had a dove. And I still have mine. Ahem.)
A honeymoon in Jamaica and a first Christmas together
One baby’s first Christmas. And then another…
…which put four peas in our pod.
Babies transforming into toddlers who emerge as playful “cowboys” riding stick horses
Enjoying a trip to Dry Gulch in Oklahoma and a much-anticipated ride on the Christmas train with the two cowboys
Little hands growing large enough to make beautiful ornaments (along with really big messes) and imaginations enjoying Bob and Larry’s Veggie Tales
A new season in our family’s life as boys grow into young men.
A son leaves homeschooling to play sports in public school with his dad as his coach.
A mom’s heart breaks but…
She remembers to trust her husband because he’s truly the best thing under the tree
Traveling into Mexico to follow God wherever He leads
Embarking on a long-awaited, God-designed trip to Guatemala and another opportunity to follow Him
I realize these aren’t ornaments. But, how could I overlook a reminder of stockings made by a grandmother for each pea in the pod.
For stick-horse riding cowboys
A Pirate quarterback
A playful boy who still enjoys Veggie Tales
A man who loves and makes daily sacrifices for his family
A sentimental mom who sits alone, staring at shadows on branches, savoring fragrant thoughts of faith, family and love
Indulging for just a moment in the sweetness of memories on a tree