As for Craig and me, our Christmas celebrations are quite low-key this year. This is partly thanks to two factors: 1) by agreement with the whole family, the only gift-giving we do is to juveniles; and, 2) our recent move.
The kitchen is torn up, requiring us to store the stove in the living room, which makes decorating a bit awkward and makes baking impossible. So my annual Christmas fruitcakes, caramel corn, cookies, pumpkin roll, and other goodies will not be making an appearance this year. Though my tastebuds are a little disappointed, it’s probably good for my overall health.
Craig and I plan to drive to the Cleveland area Christmas morning to celebrate the Big Day at his mom’s with all his family, as well as all four of our kids and five grandkids. The following day is “Smithmas” (Christmas with my side of the family), also with all our kids and grands. Sounds grand!
I don’t recall what I’ve shared in the past concerning my thoughts about the holiday, but my post on the Speculative Faith blog pretty much sums it up. That post is, by the way, my last regular contribution to that blog. I’ve had a hard time coming up with something new to write about every two weeks, and I agonized so over every post that it seemed to take almost a week to create each one. I decided a few months ago that it would be time to step aside at the end of the year, and that end has now come.
So, now that I’m freed from that responsibility, what will I do with all my time, you may ask? No worries; I see no lack of possibilities. Possible new ministry opportunities, new fiction creation, publishing endeavors, and projects in the house and garden. I don’t anticipate being bored.
But I do anticipate. Looking back can be useful for the purpose of reviewing what we’ve learned and appreciating our blessings. But for the most part, I prefer to look forward. I was going to say the view is less clear, but let’s be honest: aren’t our memories sometimes distorted? What we now view as “the good old days” we once complained about as hard times. What at first made us happy and hopeful might, in hindsight, actually have been a wrong turn. We often forget the things we should remember because we’re so bent on remembering the things we should forget.
So today, as the year draws to a close, my perspective is a little like that of the apostle Paul’s as expressed in Philippians 3:13-14: forgetting the things that are behind and reaching forth to those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
I wish you all Christmas blessings and a fruitful new year.