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Sunday, December 25, 2005

It's All About Love

This picture is from the office Christmas party eight years ago. I was on the climb up the corporate ladder, my prepubescent daughter was crossing all her t's and dotting all her i's at school. My mother's health was stable and she had a home attendant to assist her with household duties, I was the Youth Choir Director at church and sang on the Adult choir, in a long term relationship, I was twenty-five pounds lighter and I was a miserable mess.

Why?

Because my priorities were skewed. Instead of God, myself and my family, my priorities were work, my fiance, myself, my family, my church, God.

See anything wrong with that? Yes...God is at the bottom of the pile and whenever you deprioritize God, it's a recipe for heartache. In my attempts to "have" somebody, I lost touch with my family, my spiritual walk, myself and my sanity. We still lived in the same house, but I was mentally and emotionally absent.

Seeking, craving, desiring something...just out of my reach.

At the back of my mind, the rational part, or maybe the God-breathed part...whispered warnings

But they went unheeded, because I knew if I just held on a little longer...
It was just a temporary absence...
I was doing it for them (my mom and daughter), wasn't I? They'd understand...
Worked a few hours longer...

It wasn't until I tried to join the Army reserves just to get away from it all...that I got a clue that I'd created a disaster.

I had placed my ex-fiance firmly in God's spot as the ultimate provider, comforter, confident and support. A position that no man or woman can handle, the pressure is just too great!

Why am I telling you this on Christmas day?
What could this possibly have to do with Jesus' birth?

Nothing...really...unless you fast forward eight years:

I'm at the bottom of the corporate ladder, my daughter is in her Junior year at an Ivy League college, my mother's health is shaky and the home attendant she has, the funds come out of my pocket, my siblings pocket and Area Agency for the Aging's budget. I am the music director of a choir of three, my longterm relationship has ended for the most part (but that's another story), I'm in Bible School and oh yeah, twenty-five pounds heavier...but despite all of that...I'm more at peace than I have been all my life.

Why? Because one day I finally got it! I was in my thinking room (bathroom) when God showed me a glimpse of my mother's pain as a battered spouse, something I couldn't understand until I was down and out and all my abilities couldn't locate a job, my gifts couldn't maintain or sustain me. I was helpless and hopeless...a state I'm sure my mother understood well.

Although every door that promised "success" seemed closed to me, I was open in a way I'd never been before. Scales began dropping from my eyes and I began to think clearer than I had in years. God's voice was more distinct.

He had sent me the comforter a/k/a the Holys Spirit, which enabled me to wrap my brain around God's love as the ultimate parent. He sent us His son, Emmanuel, which literally means, with us is God...a message that early Christians didn't seem to get. But I now get. I get, that He loves me.

I get that as a parent, the heartache He bore of sacrificing one child Emmanuel (With us is God) , Jesus to save another Diane (Divine). And that because of me, He allowed His child to take on human flesh, knowing that child would be mocked, beaten, chased, denied, lonely, tempted and finally killed in the most humiliating and painful way devised at that time period.

But had He not allowed the birth...I would not be here rejoicing, celebrating, glorifying in the fact that a Savior is born today!

A savior who by His very name let's me know that even though it may look bleak, even though my priorities may be skewed, eventhough I'm not worthy...correction...I perceive myself as unworthy, before the foundation of the earth, He knew me and loved me and at the appointed time, He made Himself known to me...

And because of that...no matter how far out I went...He was with me, guarding me, protecting me, always loving me

That's what Christmas is about...the Love.

So love someone today. And I dare you to do it...without money

Spend some time with the ones you love. The gifts will fade away, but the time spent...is an investment for life!

3 comments:

eph2810 said...

Yes, He love you and so do I...
Once again - Merry Christmas my dear friend. May our Lord & Savior continue to shine His light through you...

Suzi said...

What a very nice story to read, especially at Christmas time. I'm glad things are going better for you that they were eight years ago.

The Blogging Boss said...

Great post on the power of Christ in your life. Been there too. Lose focus and priorities you lose true happiness.

Thanks for sharing!

Eric