December 23rd 2016. I remember standing at the front of the church as we sang songs of Christ’s birth. I clearly remember tears streaming down my face.
I had just found out a few days before that I was pregnant and the birth of Jesus, thinking of Mary pregnant with Him and birthing Him, felt so real to me.
The next day we told my in-laws. It was the happiest I had seen them get with a pregnancy announcement. It made both my husband and I laugh as we talked about it later that night.
The next day, on Christmas, we handed my parents a “gift.” It was a rolled up note tied with string. On the inside we wrote:
“Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells Jingle all the way. Oh what fun it is to say A baby is on the way!”
Once again, it was the HAPPIEST I have ever seen my family react when we announced a pregnancy. So much squealing and delight. Again Danny and I laughed about it. It was our third child and typically you expect the excitement to wain with each child, but the amount of excitement was beautiful. It was a Christmas to remember!
At almost 21 weeks we lost, our daughter, Thea. I could physically feel the pain in my heart as we lost her. It was a pain like no other. Saying hello and goodbye at the same moment. Losing a child you dreamed of a future with. It was crushing.
All of this happened just one week exactly until Easter. How fitting that the baby who brought me to tears, upon finding out I was pregnant with her around Christmas, would then go to be with our Lord just one week before Easter. I again thought of Mary. I thought of her pain, her anguish. I’m sure she had so many questions filling her mind. While her heart broke that the child she carried, raised, and loved with all her heart hung on a cross and died.
Every Christmas season I will think of Thea, and while thinking of her I will remember what the Lord showed me in those moment while tears streamed down my face. Amazing love was shown by God when he sent his son. Amazing faith was shown by Mary when she carried him. Amazing trust was shown by Joseph when he walked that journey with Mary.
The magnitude of the gift that Jesus was to the world can never fully be grasp. I pray that as each of you go about Christmas this year, a year full of so much pain for a lot of people, that you remember what Christmas is really about. It’s to celebrate the birth of our Savior.
Savior means “someone who rescues.” While his birth may have been long ago, His work is not done. Not in this world, not in your life, and especially not in your heart. Let the Savior of this world meet you in your darkest places, and bring you the peace that only the Prince of Peace can bring you. Search His word, come before Him in prayer, worship Him for who He is, and let your Christmas season be transformed by the greatest gift of all:
…the Father has sent His Son to be the Savior of the world.” – 1 John 4:14
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