“Then would you read a Sustaining Book, such as would help and comfort a Wedged Bear in Great Tightness?”
So for a week Christopher Robin read that sort of book at the North end of Pooh, and Rabbit hung his washing on the South end…” A.A.Milne
When I read that recently, I thought, “That’s it! That’s the recap of life this year.” It’s not like it has been too much, but just more like it has been plenty and the wedging into tight places is a fairly regular challenge. Something usually gives eventually and, “POP! just as if a cork were coming out of a bottle…” Meanwhile there is always the washing to hang, and that is about as far as my little parallel will take us. It really has nothing to do with too much honey, or any of the other hilarities of the story. Unlike the Bible, we are free to take Pooh out of context.
With my husband busy studying, I have been trying to pare life down to what must happen, what must be bought, where we must go, how we can thrive in the tightness, and not a lot else. I didn’t mail out Christmas letters and photos this year, and that is why. I dislike narrow spaces and claustrophobia and panicky stuff, but one day at a time, one task at a time, we get to December and the hope that springs up in the darkness at the end of the year. It’s really amazing, how the celebration of Christ’s birth coincides with long stretches of twilight, cold, and tiredness.
In my very amateur efforts at making pottery, I have learned the great importance of the first step, called centering. It’s the process of the hunk of clay being aligned, perfectly balanced on the center of the wheel, and unless it is right, the finished product will be wobbly or might even fly off the wheel altogether. At this point I cannot center clay when someone is trying to hold a conversation with me. I have to be totally focused.
This has become a loud sermon to me. There are wobbly places in my life that only dedicated focus will bring into alignment. I have decided to give the blog a rest for a few months until Gabe finishes his Bachelor’s in Nursing. I do plan to do a daily re-post in February, but I will not be putting them on my Facebook page, since that is one of the distractions that I will be giving a rest. I am going to miss the interaction, I know, but if you could pray for me? I could use some extra courage for the next year. I don’t mind being forty at all; in fact, I recommend it. It’s the season that comes with it, with so much responsibility and so little life-experience that’s wearing me down. It’s coming from all sides, and the only reasonable place to look is up.
The girls and I were listening to “Mary, Did You Know?” recently and were intrigued by the idea of “…when you kiss your little baby, you have kissed the face of God.” My personal opinion is that Mary had the angel’s promise and the rest she took on faith. It may even have been a fairly ordinary-seeming life she nurtured in her home, since the townspeople were so ignorant of Jesus’ significance as a person. By the standards of the day, he was middle-aged before his ministry began. It was 30 years for her to keep all these things and ponder them in her heart. That’s a rather long time!
I am so challenged because of my own impatience in waiting for miracles, answers to prayers, promises not yet fulfilled. But Hope rises in the darkness and we cling to that!
Have a blessed, awe-filled Christmas as you let it sink in that He is with us!