Dec 26 2017
I am writing this in the morning hours on the day after Christmas. I'm sitting here reflecting while my wonderful little family is sleeping. Our Christmas this year was not spectacular in the common sense of the season, but for us it couldn't have been much better. We didn't give large expensive gifts or those hard to get popular gifts that most folks would attribute to a "spectacular" Christmas.
Our Christmas was most spectacular because of family. We tremendously missed those that have gone on to their heavenly homes, but we rejoiced because we were together. As we opened gifts from each other here in our humble little home, we were all here. For the first time that we can remember my youngest daughter and my wife were here at home on Christmas! It may not seem like a big deal to most but to me and my family it is huge. Alina, my youngest has a special genetic condition that is the only one on record, and has cause developmental issues that allows her to get sick easier and more completely than most children her age.
This year was the first time we've all been home together for Christmas! In years past I'd have the big kids at home and my wife would be with our littlest at the hospital. Anytime they have to be away from us and in the hospital isn't an idea time but Christmas is just a little harder. I've tried telling myself that it's just another day, Christmas is no different than any other day but I haven't convinced myself of that yet. So this year is special.
This year we went to the movies on Christmas day, just our little family. We saw "The Star". This was just one more way to celebrate our King coming to earth. We praise God for all He has done to save us and for all the many blessings he has given us. This year our greatest blessing is being together. We are living a Doxology moment. Praising God from whom all Blessings flow, Praising Him all creatures here below, Praising Him above ALL heavenly host, Praising Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. AMEN
We had a hospital stay over Thanksgiving and through the first of December. It was all looking pretty discouraging but she made it. She made it out and stayed out. We've had a few trips to the hospital during December but somehow she stayed out. Even though we know she isn't feeling 100%, we did get to celebrate her December 23 birthday at home this year and we celebrated Christmas all together.
This makes me focus on the manger. My little family's celebration is nothing compared to that one Starry night, but it is great to me and my family and it points us to the night of His birth.
I can only imagine what it was like that night in the lonely stable when a baby was born, shepherds suddenly appeared from their fields and Angels sang glorious songs. Not all saw or heard but those that believed I am sure were blessed beyond measure. I know my child is not the Messiah, but because of her I celebrate this wonderful event with a joy filled heart and a little more understanding. PRAISE GOD! All Praises to my Lord and King.
As many of you know we were also involved in starting a group called Alina's Angels. We, along with some friends gathered some small gifts and made them in to comfort packages. During this time of gathering and bringing together, we've all been sick with a cold or some sort of bug. I truly believe this happened to distract us from our mission. Fortunately while we were down, there were other brothers and sisters in The Faith that continued to work. I thank them whole heartedly for this! This isn't the first time I've experienced this. I've been part of several other missions where spiritual warfare has taken place. I have seen folks get sick and have to leave trips, I've seen others have bad dreams even to the point of two separate people having the same dream. All of this is a distraction from serving. It's an attempt of an entity that has already lost the war to gather as many souls as possible and keep the Good News from reaching the ears and hearts of those in need. We've nursed Alina to keep her out of the hospital and had many lifting her in prayer. We've fought off these different bugs that would be detrimental to the delivery of the packages. Thank You all for praying for my family. We know that Alina's Angels is something that needs to continue simply because of the push back the evil one has given us. This too is part of why I give Him praises this Christmas. To God be ALL the Glory. I am thankful that He allows my little family serve Him through serving His people.
I know all this seems to be a little scattered and messy but it's the stream of conscious writing. As things that have my heart over joyed come to the surface, I write. I have been talking to my wife about "Old Christmas" which is a celebration of Epiphany. It is more pure and sincere than what we are doing for the December 25 Christmas celebrations. We may not be able to get anything together this year but in upcoming years, look for it. It follows the 12 days of Christmas and the journey of the Wisemen. I have more research to do on this but many of the Orthodox churches still celebrate it. Some call it Little Christmas.
With everything I have shared in this Blog Post, I must say Thank You to everyone who has been instrumental in helping me and my little family. Thank You for the prayers you have prayed and the Love and support you have shown us. I praise God that you are in our lives. Please continue to Lift Up my family and the ministries that we are involved in. God has touched your hearts as well as ours. We are Grateful for this!
To God Be the Glory!