Sunday, December 10, 2006

Welcome to our World

So, this morning was kind of an emotional one at church. Lots of ups and downs. We're doing a series on advent, and each Sunday a family/couple/individual lights the candle. This week's candle represented peace, and the family who lit it is going through an extremely difficult time. The mother, who has four children, the youngest in just 1st grade, is dealing with cancer for the second time. She has a long, difficult time ahead of her, and the Prince of Peace is the only one who can provide the peace that family needs.

As the family walked back down the aisle, the worship leader began to sing "Welcome to our World," one of my favorite Christmas songs. And as this beautiful woman walked by me, I heard her singing..."wrap our injured flesh around you, breathe our air and walk our sod." And I just couldn't take it. The miracle of the advent, the mess of the world we live in, that deep longing for a home I've never seen...it all came crashing down on me. My tears formed jagged circles on the paper-thin pages of my Bible. And I prayed for peace.

Then, after the service, I was off to teach Sunday school. I love my kids. They're cute, they're fun, and they had way too much sugar this morning. By the time I herded them to Bible story, I was feeling a little frazzled. But then, mere minutes later, I stood in the back of the room and heard their sweet voices singing "Silent Night," and the tears began again. I wondered how much they understood of the Christmas carols they sang. I wondered how much I understood.

It's no wonder I was ready for a nap by 1 this afternoon.

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