Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.James 1:17
Christmas. It can be so high and yet so low all at the same time. Statistically it has been proven that more people die around the holidays than at any other time in the year. Personally I lost my dad and a brother in past Christmas seasons. Holiday season is also famously cold and flu season. It’s also often a time when families, broken or otherwise, seem to have the most conflict. And if there is ever a time for appliances to go haywire, car troubles to arise, layoffs to occur, and more, welp, you guessed it… the holidays appear to attract these kinds of calamities too. The truth is, Satan would like nothing better than to obliterate the essence of the very season we celebrate hope and life, light and love.
Yesterday we had to make an emergency trip to the veterinary clinic. My kitty, Bubu, who you all may know from my blog ID photo, had a very nasty abscess that needed to be taken care of. The minor surgery performed was very painful for him, and we could hear his yeowls and cries from the waiting room. He’s home now and has to wear a cone for the next 10 days so that he will not lick the healing salve off of his wound. I think the cone may be almost as much of a challenge for me as it is for him (not to mention the pills, ugh)! We take him back in January to make sure all of his blood levels are back to normal and all is well.
Sitting in the patient room and waiting for them to finish caused me to reflect on all of this. The Lord lovingly reminded me of a story told to us by a sweet “young” lady in her 90’s (I think she may have been 93 at the time, and this was a few years ago already). She had been telling us about her Christmas. She had been praying for her relationship with her daughter to change for a number of years, and yet there hadn’t been much impact. One year she felt impressed that, instead of complaining to the Lord how things hadn’t changed, she would instead give Him praise for things that were indeed going to change but that just had not yet manifested visibly. What a sweet reminder of who God IS, and that He desires to give good gifts to His children. It was not long afterwards when her daughter reached out, and the two have been enjoying a healing, growing relationship ever since.
As I began to praise God for all that He was in process of manifesting on behalf of Bubu, and that we have had the pleasure of loving him all these years, my thoughts turned to how good God truly is. Everything Satan works to kill, steal, or destroy, God is already working out for good on my behalf, simply because I love Him. I love that He is called the “Father of Lights” – isn’t that beautiful? I love that there is no shadow of turning with Him, that He is not only all good but consistently good, and as a popular song underscores, He can’t be anything else.
This fact, that He cannot be anything else BUT good, is what I implore you to hold onto, especially if you perceive in some way, shape, or form that God has somehow let you down. He’s used to His reputation being trashed and is so often misunderstood as a result. Know that He may guide you through a dark valley, but He will never let you down in the process, and unlike other so-called gods who have no power, love, or life, He is waiting patiently to lavish His love on you if you will let Him. Sometimes we need to remember not to lick the healing salve off our wounds.
I know there are those who will say that Christmas started off as a pagan holiday, and that the Catholic church was looking for a way to replace the pagan traditions. True. But GOOD NEWS, what is also true is that Jesus really DID come as a babe in a manger, fully man and yet fully God. He really DID come as a gift from the Father of Lights, to offer us eternal life. He really IS the one who sets us free from bondage and sin and kisses the center of our being to come alive with hope, purpose and calling. So there’s that… and what better way to celebrate this time of year than to reflect on all that He IS?