I admit, the beginning of the holiday season last week did not thrill me. Turkey Day loomed on the horizon, but the Blaze Orange Holiday of Wisconsin deer hunting was the toughest to anticipate. I ignored it all as long as I could, stayed busy, and resisted making any definite plans until hard pressed. The baton of our long standing hostess position was offered up to my sister. Unfortunately, it wasn't to be so, when they ended up with what was first thought to be a child with the flu that eventually would up being an emergency room visit and a trip to the big city for an overnight stay in the Children's Hospital. An eye opener to all about what we are truly celebrating on this gluttonous day. Needless to say, we never did make it to their house, but instead disappointed all of the cousins and will have to plan for a Christmas sleepover.
My well laid out plans to ignore the week morphed into being one of the best holidays that we've enjoyed for years. This humble farmhouse became a revolving door as we welcomed old friends that we haven't seen for many months as well as friends and family that we see regularly, a couple of nights of sleep overs, and an unexpected visit from relatives on Thursday. There was no turkey in sight, but instead authentic Indian chicken curry, home grown steaks on the grill, and too many pieces of Éclair cake and cream cheese pumpkin pie.
Some of the highlights that found us smiling:
*A house overflowing with loud, laughing kids.
*Familiar faces who have made up Thanksgivings past and present so memorable.
*Friends who sent emails, little knowing the power of their simple words.
*Frosting turkey cookies.
*Cranking the grinder to make cranberry salad.
*Playing tag in the dark.
*House movers who found time to move a house during this festive week.
*Tears for friends who have new babies welcomed into the world and at the same time other friends who have said good-bye to their mother; an ushering in and out of this little blip of time in the midst of eternity.
*The overwhelming knowledge that God would continue to use this broken vessel for His glory.
The crash seems to come afterward. When all the people have gone home, and the sugar rush is winding down and there isn't enough to do except wait for eternity to begin. When again the extra chair is empty and the days are long. How I desire for the work of God to overwhelm me so as to pass this time quicker. How I need a place to invest for His sake. Ministering, cooking, serving, encouraging, challenging, hugging, loving, even driving to pick up a momma and her son curbside at the ER makes this doable. I smiled through the Holiday. I thought of and prayed for so many of you, hoping that you were able to smile as well.