I thought I would post a Christmas meditation this year. This was written nine years ago, a few months after Peter and I came as missionaries to Japan. At that time, I was already injured, bedridden, in constant pain. I find myself remembering that time frequently these days. I hope that this will help to frame your Christmas this year, as many of us spend a much lonelier holiday than we would have hoped.

December 25, 2011

Lord, today is Your birthday, and it feels strangely fitting to spend it mostly with You.

You and me, alone together.

This Christmas is so vastly different from anything I’d anticipated—and I’d thought it would be very different from before! But I didn’t expect to be in bed, not at church, and not with Peter.

Despite these differences, I can’t help but feel blessed, because You’re here; because this Christmas my focus is more singular, without the distraction of people; because I get to be with You.

I love and trust You, Jesus. Thank You for this time, because I know it will not be wasted.

There’s so much to be thankful for. Thank You for coming to earth. Were You ever homesick? I bet You were. You’d exchanged the riches and purity of heaven for the moral and physical filth of everything we’ve done to pollute Your world.

Were You lonely? Maybe, like me, it was partial loneliness. You could still talk with Your Father, just in a different form. For me, the vehicle is the Internet; for You, it was prayer. It’s not the same, though, is it?

Did it help to know that Your Father was proud of You? After all, He sent the angels to herald Your birth, and the dove to affirm the start of Your ministry.

Based on my experience, I would say it helps, but it’s no substitute for physical contact.

So, this Christmas I come to You understanding a little more than before. Thank You for Your sacrifice—not just on the cross, but for the thirty years before that, as You lived in a foreign land.


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