Friday, December 25, 2009
"Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord."
We are celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ today, as are so many of you. Christmas is not about presents, feasts and being with family, though all those things are an important part of our celebration. Christmas is a celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ, who came to Earth in the form of a child, with the sole purpose of dying on the cross for our sins. As we remember the birth, the story is not complete without His death, and resurrection. Christmas is made complete through the blessing of Easter.
We celebrated with our usual pattern of going to my Mom's house to celebrate with my side of the family last night. Today, we celebrated with the five of us (more on that later). This evening, we'll go to Tammy's parents to celebrate with her side of the family. It is a joy to get together with both sides of the family, because we are all so close. We have known each other for so long (remember, we met the summer between first and second grade) that we feel like we grew up together. So her family is my family, and vice versa.
We always have plenty of good food to eat, and lots of laughs as we watch each other open presents. It's such a joy, especially with the little kids.
The celebration is enhanced by the fact that the whole family knows why we celebrate Christmas. We don't have to water down our celebration. We celebrate the birth of our Lord, as families.
But this year there's even more celebration. We have a healthy Tammy with us. We thank you so much for your prayers during the past year. We believe God has answered those prayers in a powerful and loving way. If you've been following this blog for a while, you know that Tammy's prayer for years has been to "be used in a mighty way." As we celebrate this Christmas with Tammy well on her way to full recovery, God is being glorified by His healing power, and by Tammy's faithfulness. Her joy of being around, and her real joy of serving Him in all she does, is a testimony to her devotion to Him. We believe He has honored that devotion in His decision to let her continue to live here with us.
Another blessing we are celebrating this Christmas is a new member of our family. On December 17, David Lee asked Wiola Kucharska to marry him...and she said "Yes!" We're not sure when the wedding will be, probably a year or so away. We do know that it will be in Poland. But she has been with us in Kansas City for the past couple of weeks and will be until January 3. We'll miss her when she returns to Poland, but we are thrilled beyond words to have this beautiful young lady--inside and out--as part of our family. David has found a treasure, and it's very, very obvious they love each other. She's standing between David and Julie in the picture above.
As darkness fell last night, the snow started. We have about 10 inches of snow, so the snow board that we bought David came in real handy. It's the first White Christmas we've had since 1982, and the most snow we've ever had on Christmas Eve/Day. Julie has been wanting a White Christmas for a long time, so we're definitely enjoying it.
Last night, Tammy was able to experience our church's Christmas Eve service in an unusual way. David brought his laptop to the church and logged on to Skype. We logged on to Skype on my laptop at home and Tammy watched--and sang along--as the story of Christmas was told in story and song. After the service, many of our friends got to say hi to her through the video camera and see her on screen.
As this Christmas day winds down, we pray that you will remember the reason we stop the world for a day at Christmas. A Savior has been born to us; He is Christ the Lord.