Last night was the coldest night so far this winter. I KNOW – we live in Pensacola, Florida! No night is ever that cold compared to nearly every place else in the country. But, it was doggoned chilly for us. Of course it was the coldest night so far, it was the first evening of our church’s live nativity. Live nativity equals cold weather!
I returned home after being outside for a little over three hours at the church; my feet were cold and sore. As I got out of the Explorer, I looked up to heaven. The sky was clear and thousands of stars were shining overhead. It was absolutely gorgeous. I stood there, thanking God for sending the cold to make the view of the stars so dramatic.
As we got into bed, I noticed the weight of the covers. I don’t think that I would ever enjoy an electric blanket; I like the weight and the warmth of blankets. On our bed is a yellow blanket that was given to us when we got married. It is worn and probably needs to be replaced, but it is so soft. Also, on our bed it something that I have always described as an “army blanket.” It is gray and a little stiff and really warm. My Grandmother Mullins gave it to me when I was in high school. Mom crocheted my initials, “CJ” in the middle of it, and I have always had it with me. The gray blanket would never be termed “soft” but it is warm and heavy.
And so, last night, John and I said good night and he drifted off to sleep. But, I didn’t go to sleep. And, as I laid there, under the weight of the blankets and knowing that the stars were shining brightly above our little home, I could not stop thinking about Christmas. It was as if God were whispering in my ear, “Christmas is coming. Christmas is coming.” I was excited about staying awake, thinking about the stars and Christmas and John and the kids and my family and my church and…well, just everything. It was like an early Christmas Eve.
Some experts would tell me that my feet, sore from the cold, were keeping me from falling asleep. Or, someone else might blame my love of diet Coke. But, they would be wrong. You see adults can also be excited about Christmas.
Oh, I will enjoy being with family and friends. Yes, the food around Christmas is always amazing. And, don’t get me wrong, I like giving and receiving gifts. But, last night I thought most about the stars and the warmth and the love that I don’t deserve. And, I thought to myself “Christmas is coming.”
Christmas came when the Christ child was born. The star announced His coming and those around felt the warmth of God’s love like they had never known.
But, one day soon, the heavens will shine again with the coming of Christ. This time it won’t be announced by a single star or even a thousand stars. This time, the sky itself will be opened and we will all see Him.
When we think of the stable in Bethlehem, our hearts are warmed by the image of the babe in the manger. When Christ comes again, our hearts will be overwhelmed with the knowledge that He is triumphant and that there will be no more death and no more sadness.
Friend, Christmas is coming!
Praise the name of the Lord!!
“For the Lord Himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage one another with these words!!” (I Thessalonians 4:16-18)
Jill (just one of God’s kids)