Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas (for friends and soldiers)

I would to take this small piece of down time that I have on Christmas day, to wish you all a safe and Merry Christmas. It is a little before 6:00am and I have been awake for awhile, I can not sleep, as is usual when insomnia kicks in hard. I did sleep for about 5 hours and that is enough, and more than some people get. Since I have been awake for so long I have had a lot of time to think about the meaning of Christmas, especially this year. This tough economy has been especially rough on me as I have yet to find a job since I graduated college in May. I am lucky enough to be able to live at home with my parents, and to have a fiance who loves me enough to stick around and pay the small amount of bills we have (cell phone, credit cards, car payments). Because of the economy I was not able to buy gifts for people, and I do not expect much either, and quite frankly I am much happier not having to worry about gifts. For once Christmas is not about gifts, it is about spending it with the people I love, and the people who love me. Not having to worry about gifts and surviving mall lines I had time to remember two things and I invite you to remember these things as you celebrate this time of the year.

1. 11For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. 12And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. 13And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, 14Glory to God in the highest, andon Earth peace, good will toward men.’

– Luke 8: 8-14

Yes indeed, we commemorate the birth of Christ and remember that on that first Christmas, the King of King was born in a stable behind an inn. Animals, dirty hay, no doubt some animal by-products abounded and yet it is perhaps the greatest gift.

2. There are some folks who will not be celebrating Christmas with their families this year. They are far from home, in a strange land, among brothers and sisters in arms. They are the soldiers of the US Military and it is their sacrifice that allow us to celebrate freely with our loved ones. While we unwrap gifts, eat a holiday meal, share laughter and love with our families and friends, please remember that some of our men and women have been standing through the night, coming off a 12 hour shift, some of them engaging in fire fights and diffusing road side bombs. Far from home, away from their families, and yet they do what they do with honor and pride and because they love you and I. Show the same love to them and honor them this holiday season. If you know the family of a soldier make sure to visit them and let them know you appreciate their sacrifice as well.

A Soldiers Night Before Christmas

To you and yours, from me and mine, Merry Christmas. May it be safe and filled with joy and May the Lord pour His blessing upon you.


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