Dec. 19, 2015

Are you ready for Christmas?

“Are you ready for Christmas?”

Everywhere I’ve been the last few days some smiling person has asked me, “Are you ready for Christmas?” They mean have I spent my very last dime on presents, are they wrapped and under the tree and are my cards in the mail. Well, unlike the lady I talked about last week, who bought 85 presents for each and every one of her children, and who, by the way, was on Good Morning America!” a couple of days ago telling the world that she spent a mere $2,300 on Christmas and all she really wanted to do when she posted the picture of that egregious pile of gifts on various social media was to show the Christmas décor she had created. The Good Morning America! person could hardly talk at all as there was so little to say to this woman that would be pleasant and positive. I, of course, was laughing so hard I had to set my coffee down.


Yes, I’m ready for Christmas! No, my cards aren’t in the mail, actually, I haven’t done them yet but I’m of the persuasion that our cards could be the very last ones our friends receive before the year ends, or the very first ones they receive in 2016.


Yes, I’m ready for Christmas! I’ve been making apple butter and Christmas jam, pumpkin cookies, fruitcake cookies, pumpkin bread, cranberry bread, cranberry apple bread and all these cute little foodie gifts in these baskets have to be mailed off to various delightful folks in the next day or so. But that’s my mailing expert, John’s, job. I bake it, you mail it!


Yes, I’m ready for Christmas! We went to a wonderful Christmas concert at Valley Presbyterian  Church last Sunday night where the choir sang one of the songs David Wheatley and I wrote, “That First Noel’s Come ‘Round Again,” and the fellowship hall where the concert was held was full of young couples with lovely children, older folks, middle-aged folks, all consuming quantities of cookies and punch and enjoying the songs of the season. We sang O Little Town of Bethlehem, Silent Night! Holy Night!. The choir gave us How Should A King Come, Go Tell It on The Mountain, Mary Did You Know, and other tender Christmas songs. We heard...


“And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ, the Lord.....Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.” Luke 2:8-13


Yes, I’m ready for Christmas! My thoughts are on how happy we are to be giving gifts to Angel Tree children and shoes for the homeless people who come to Central Park in Pasadena for a hot breakfast every Sunday morning. There are small gifts for our thirteen grandchildren and three great-grandchildren...nowhere near $2,300!!


We enjoyed every minute of our traditional Christmas dinner with dear friends, Pam and Mike, and daughter, Leah, and her husband, Chuck; featuring spinach quiche, the most incredible corn casserole, loaded with bacon, that we’ve ever had, winding up with apple cake and eggnog ice cream. We sat long at the table and talked of the water situation, places we’ve been, our children, and our special guest this year was son-in-law, Chuck’s, mother, Elaine, who is 93 and a more interesting dinner companion you’d never find.


Yes, I’m ready for Christmas! A precious friend, Darrell, who is very ill, will celebrate his birthday today and will be with his lovely wife for Christmas, which is simply a miracle. We’re rejoicing in small things, happy moments, knowing Emmanuel, God is with us!


Merry Christmas, dear friends!

May God bless you and keep you and make his face to shine upon you

And give you peace...and joy!