Christmas is about family. Its a time when families gather together and celebrate. We celebrate the birth of our Savior, or at least that is what we are supposed to be celebrating. It seems that now adays more people celebrate presents, and food, and parties, rather than remember the true "reason for the season."
I have been pretty ill this last few months. Everything is such a struggle and I spend a lot of time going to the doctors, getting tests, taking medication. I find myself isolating a lot, wanting to spend time alone, sleep, or just let time pass me by. I didn't have the energy to shop, to bake, to play Christmas songs and dance around and sing. There is no tree up at my house, no decorations, The rolls of wrapping paper are sitting in the corner and the presents are stuck in a box with each kids name on it, and duct taped shut. For my grandkids I shopped online and had it sent straight to them. No stockings are hung. I had decided that Christmas just wasn't going to happen this year. But I forgot that these are not the things that make Christmas. Christmas is about Jesus. Its about going to church and watching the youth put on a Christmas program. Its about going with your church family and handing out food and fruit baskets and singing Christmas carols. These things I was able to do. Its about going to church on Christmas eve to sing praises to God for sending His Son for us. Its about spending time with family, and friends, and showing them you love them, and accepting their love for you.
I have one of those messed up kind of lives where my family is very mixed and matched. Being adopted, you have a lot of issues. I have a family that shares DNA with me. I have no relationship with my birth mother, but I know my sister and an uncle and I love them both dearly. These are my blood relations. I have my adopted family, my mother, 2 brothers, 2 sisters-in-law, and lots of nieces and nephews. I love them as well. I also have my church family, the family that God gave to me, where He placed me to be saved and to serve. He has given me a group of people who love me even when I am unlovable. Who miss me when I am not there, and who are happy to see me. Who tease me, and worry about me, and chew me out (with love) when I mess up. He has given me awesome friends who refuse to let me isolate. Who drag me out and keep me as active as I can manage, but who don't act disappointed in me when I wear down.
I have had a few people make comments about how they cannot wait til I get back to being "the old Beckie", because this Beckie "isn't fun". That the doctors need to "Fix" me so I can "get back to normal.". This kinda hurts my feelings because while I feel bad, I don't feel like I am broken to need to be "fixed". And when someone goes through an illness, many times they come out on the other side changed, and never go back to the way they were before the illness. I look at a lot of things differently, my priorities are different, my wants and needs are different. God has slowed me down, so I have no desire to go 90 to nothing all the time. He has shown me that I have to take care of myself, instead of putting myself dead last in order to meet everyone else's wants and needs. I want to be loved for who I am, whether I am sick Beckie or well Beckie or fun Beckie or depressed Beckie. I am still Beckie. These are just sides of me, they are not what defines me. But to feel like I am not good enough for someone if I don't behave the way they think I need to, or act like I did back when I was killing myself to satisfy everyone, that makes me feel like people don't love me for ME, but for what I can do for them. And that is not love.
Christmas is the season of Love. Remember John 3:16. For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. God loves us, whether we deserve it or not, whether we are sick or healthy, whether we are happy or sad. He loves us unconditionally. We should be the same towards each other. So as everyone gathers together with their family, look past the presents, and the food and truly look at each other. Love the ones that God has put in your life. Don't be upset if they are down, or sick, love the fact that they are still alive to love on. Don't look at people as needing to be fixed. God has put them in the valley for a reason, and people grow and change in the valley, don't pressure them to be what they no longer are. Love your family. Love your friends. Love God and Jesus, and remember this season is about Them.
Merry Christmas! May your holidays be everything you hope they are, and may you find Love wrapped up inside every package.