have you ever watched the
Kennedy Center honors? once a year,
six individuals are chosen who have
artistically impacted the world.
pure human talent.
clean. original. magnificent.
dance and music and acting that
melts your heart. paints the air
with an energy that forces us
to recognize the awesome power of
the Divine, and we raise our arms...
throw them toward the sky...above
the cold hardness of life. because
of the extraordinary talent birthed
in these flawed, otherwise common lives, we
somehow feel aligned with the rare
beauty of the universe...and our Creator.
and we are changed.
if God can take these and change the world,
what can He do in us?
it is like the Christmas season
for me. my children come bounding in
from their worlds. the refrigerator
is filled with goodies. there are hugs
and kisses. we are a family.
we have found our way through
difficult stuff. tried to stand together.
prayed for each other. and now,
here we are. safe because of the
walls of love that stand around us.
several days later, the bedrooms
are a mess. i have been doing laundry.
feeding everyone. X-Boxes and computer
wires and bodies sprawled everywhere
to play and sleep. chaos takes over.
a tense moment between two brothers.
one needs more responsibility.
another drinks too much.
and i zip my lips. for eighteen years
of each of their lives, i did my feeble
best to teach and guide them. to quietly
live truth out before them.
is your family perfect?
do you have MOMENTS when you all
get together? tensions?
merry, glowing, Christmas letters
make me want to curl up into
a fetal position of stark depression.
no one in the world needs to hear
of other families' perfections.
at least, i don't.
my heart beats for my children.
where they are. where they are going.
how they hurt. is Jesus everything
to them? have i messed up too much?
they know they are my stars
and sunrise, and a million setting
suns. and we are warriors. tight.
loss and sorrow and pain have bound
us together. fiercely.
but have i set the right tone?
taught the truth of what really matters?
love and forgiveness and that
Jesus is the SOLID ROCK. we cannot
go anywhere unless we realize that.
is easier than looking at my
late teens and early twenty year olds
and praying...pleading with God
that i have prepared them for life.
let me know about your Christmas.
just...please do not sound too glorious.
life is really not about a God-given talent
where we are applauded for our great
contribution to society at the Kennedy Center.
life is taking one day at a time,
and living in such a way
that all those who pass by
feel the warmth and hope and love,
and are changed.