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We've been waiting...


The day just started that way.  

Just too early.  One of those.  

I tried to be positive.  Count my blessings.  Enjoy the early, midnight-like sky out the windows, snuggling with the boys.  Took a picture as the sun peeked up.  

Trying, trying, trying.

I started on chores.  Tossed every piece of bedding, for every bed, in the wash.  Gave little men baths while other homes were just waking up and getting breakfast around.  Let them create mayhem around the room while I dusted; packed away too-small little boy clothes and made room for the next size.  

And then.

Then the tears and the tantrum and the wanting to push my head or my fist through the wall.  Trying to breath deep, ignore the pressing and the stressing, but my buttons just kept getting pushed. My willpower dangling off a rickety bridge.  My patience spring-boarding out of control, sky-rocketing into another world.  Impatience, exhaustion, hugging close.  With one sitting on the potty and crying for the upteenth time about who-knows-what and the littlest trying to make the Christmas tree his new fort... I mean, please.  Bless it already, but honestly.  Please.  Stop the madness.

It was only 9:00 a.m.  

I shove a snack at the oldest, low-blood sugar probably partially to blame for his out of control emotions (what’s my excuse?  I eat a snack, too.) and I notice sunlight, glinting off the ornaments and making light circles on our wall.  I point them out to the baby.  Hoping to distract him for a bit.  Keep him from trying to taste anymore ornaments.  And I say, “Look!  Do you see?  Look at the sun-spots!  They’re just shining through!”

I surprisingly choked.

A silver lining.  A stressed-out, tear-teased smile.  

It can look so messy.  So chaotic.  So undone.  Completely falling apart, unraveling, tantrums unending, all morning long.  And then, there it is.  Just a little sparkle in the middle of something plain.  Ordinary.  Shadowed.

Hallowed.

A night sky over Bethlehem.  An average, run-of-the-mill manger.  The same four-legged creatures that dwell and bleat.  Just a normal, every day.  Running the business.  A busy inn.  Ladling out soup, breaking crusts of bread.  Just one more knock at the door on a completely weary, worn out day.  

No room.  We’re sorry. Just no room for y’all.

At capacity.  At our limit.  It’s too early, it’s too late, it’s too much.  It’s fatigue and grief, shopping lists and bills.  It’s laundry and the mundane and another lump of chicken in the crock-pot.  It’s waiting and it’s reconciling; cleaning, wondering, driving.  Forgiveness and anticipation, I-love-you and I’m-sorry and how all the hanging-on has you wondering if you shouldn’t just go ahead and let go.

Last night I sang it.  Sat down at the piano, played a song I’ve been playing for years.  “Bring Your peace into our violence; bid our hungry souls be filled... Welcome to our world.” 

Busted and broken, welcome.  

Come into our little messy houses, with our snotty children and our dirty floors and our angry fits.  Swell us and be birthed in us.  Sing with us; You be our choir.  Our highest praise. Be our altar and take all we lay down.  Be our pile of stones in the wilderness; a testament to what Your mercy looks, feels, sounds like.

Stand next to us, be our shield.  Our fortress.  Our Kinsman-Redeemer.  Repeat in our hoping ears, “I marry you, I marry you, I marry you” and kiss us blind with adoration and take us forever into a love story that is beyond everything, between worlds, taking love and sacrifice to a hill, to a beam.

So small.  Just a spot on a wall.  

A twinkling in the sky, leading.  A blood, red round on a Holy, Mighty, before-all and in-all palm.  God the Father, God the Son, God incarnate, before the world, before any Word on any page, in any pew Bible beaten with age and page finding,... just Him.  He was, and is.  The word.  The bread.  The love.  The water, drunken down.  Tiny fingers on a wall, finding the way to brighter spots.

The Light. 

Always shining through.   


"Fragile finger sent to heal us,
tender brow prepared for thorn,
tiny heart whose blood will save us,
unto us is born, unto us is born.
So wrap our injured 
flesh around You,
breathe our air and walk our sod,
Rob our sin and make us holy,
perfect Son of God..."
~ Chris Rice, Welcome to Our World



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