Aren't the weeks and days leading up to Christmas manic? Though my "manic" is probably most people's fairly ordinary, but that's par for the course. I have socialised, wondered why I don't do this more often as it's really fun, then spent the next week slowly realising why as I gradually recover (still not quite there and it's been more than a week now). I have baked, since naturally it is not Christmas without home made gingerbread, among other things. I have done a lot of finishing on knitting projects, knitting is just delayed sewing, it gets you making the fabric, then the sewing sneaks up on you. I have yet again discovered that much as I adore choosing and giving presents, I'm no fan of wrestling the wrapping paper into submission. And I have helped rescue a fallen down Christmas tree, among other Christmas preparations.
I think I must be a slow learner because I'm shattered and have had the same headache (from over doing things) for a good week now. Today I cracked and took the good headache pills so I can at least have Christmas day headacheless (I hope!). I am doing better than earlier in the week, when I had made myself so stressed and anxious that I could not sleep.
A number of times in all of this I have looked up at the little wooden decoration a friend sent me a couple of years' ago which shows Mary and Joseph travelling with their donkey and it has refocused me on the why of Christmas, which I find easy to loose in a welter of anxieties and preparations. Thanks to that reminder, a number of times I have been able to say that it does not matter, whatever it is I am worrying about, Jesus matters. He came and stooped to meet us and because He came we all have hope: hope for now and hope for the future. I will do my best to focus on that hope this Christmas and for the future and be glad that at least my Christmas does not involve a seventy mile donkey ride.
I wish you and your family a peaceful and joyful Christmas. I'll leave you with this lovely and local carol:
"Then why should we on earth be sad,
Since our Redeemer made us glad:
When from our sin He set us free,
All for to gain our liberty...
"All out of darkness we have light
Which made the angels sing this night"