Just a few pictures of what made this Christmas one of the best, most memorable Christmases ever.....
I'm up late Christmas Eve, and because I planned to plan ahead this year, I'm not wrapping. No. There's not one thing left to do, so I'm up late pondering things by the light of the Christmas tree.
But the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end."
"How will this be," Mary asked the angel, "since I am a virgin?"
The angel answered, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be barren is in her sixth month. For nothing is impossible with God." (Luke 1:30-37)
I was interested to notice that the verse about nothing being impossible with God was in conjunction with Mary. I hadn't recalled that.
I kept reading though and read about Mary's visit to Elizabeth. When Elizabeth saw Mary, the Bible says she was filled with the Holy Spirit and then she says a lot of really wonderful things about Mary, but she ends by saying this:
"Blessed is she who has believed that what
the Lord has said to her will be accomplished!"
I read it ten times.
I want to be clear. I am not comparing myself to Mary. Not at all. That would be dumb....on so many levels.
But, what I do want to say is what I have come to know to be true over the last 2 years of this adoption journey. The Bible is called God's Word for a reason. It's alive and it still speaks today.
I'm SO glad it does. God used Elizabeth's words to Mary to speak to my heart right where I was on a typical Sunday morning in 2009.
I believe that what the Lord has "said" to me will be accomplished.
Just like Mary....I'm sure it looks really crazy to a lot of people. I think some people think I'm nuts. Others think I probably heard God wrong. Still others probably think it isn't about hearing God at all....do I get how adoption in China works? It doesn't work like that...who cares how much peace I have.
Yeah, I know all that. It feels risky to say all this tonight. I'll be honest, I've almost deleted this post at least four times. But, I cannot explain to you the assurance I have. So, maybe I'll look like a fool. I guess I'm ok with that.
I bet Mary thought that too. Again, I'm not comparing myself or my situation to Mary, but every year I get just a little bit closer to understanding what she must have been going through and pondering deeper questions about who she was and how she handled the responsibility God chose her for. I'm so thankful that God keeps using her story to speak to me and encourage me in this journey that has felt so challenging each year for very different reasons.
There's just something about Mary that I can relate to now in ways I couldn't before God called us to adoption. Something about Mary that makes me look forward to learning more about her every Christmas for years to come!
Merry Christmas, and may the new year bring you impossible blessings!
I'm sure praying for one! :)
I said to Scot just this morning, "Wasn't it about this time last year when our kids vomited for almost 2 solid weeks?"
I'm signed up for the latest Rawsii photography class beginning in February (thanks, mom!!). If you have a DSLR camera and would like to know what on earth to DO with it or how to shoot in manual and get something besides a BLUR, then head on over to this blog post. I just saw on Facebook that she just may have a couple openings!! I'd love to have "company" in class while I make a fool out of myself trying to take nice pictures!! :)
Congratulations, Tami! You have won $30 worth of Barefoot Books!!! WOO HOO!! Thanks for spreading the word!