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Friday, December 24, 2010

mary, mary, all but contrary

I went to bed last night trying to think of ideas for my next blog post.

My worst gifts was what I came up with.  Of course I'd turn it around and let everyone know that Christmas is not about the gifts you receive. 

But every five-year-old kid remembers getting a package of embarrassing underwear, right?

Anyway, I woke up this morning with my heart so heavy, I couldn't even begin to pretend to be quirky and clever in my writing.

I woke, well, feeling quite sorry for myself, honestly.  It's my very first Christmas away from home.  I live alone, and most of my friends have vacated to their respective hometowns to be with their families.  And if I weren't in the food industry I'd easily be doing the same thing.  

And even though I had time to prepare myself emotionally for the absence of the things that make this holiday fun this season, it still feels like I've been orphaned out here.  My grandparent's Christmas Eve party has always been one of my favorite things, and I'm missing it to serve draft beers and french fries to strangers.  I just couldn't stand thinking that my whole family is going to be having a beautiful celebration this evening without me. 

Woe, woe, woe.  Big crocodile tears.  Crumpled on the floor, praying that my neighbors can't hear my blubbering.

Then I got the kick in the pants I truly needed. 

I have so many things to be thankful for.  I have a family to miss.  I'm not overseas, I'm not in the military.  I'm not putting my life on the line by serving tables (most of the time, anyway). 

And then I got to thinking about Mary, and how she must have been feeling that first Christmas eve.  The eve before the Son of Man was to be born.  She was just a mere child.

And I know there is a whole religion that addresses Mary as a Saint, but the truth was, she was incredibly human.  She was a woman.  She had mood swings.  She probably felt like most women feel every day.  Inadequate.  Like no matter how hard she tries, she can't be good enough, thin enough. 

She probably had a hard time keeping her apartment clean. 

And while God has never asked me to do anything like, you know, give birth to His son, I can relate to her.  I hope.  There have been plenty of things He has called me to do in my life that have been challenging.  And I always put up a fight. 

God, not me.  There's no way I'm good enough.  There's no way.  It's not me.  Please don't ask. 

But, look how Mary approaches the task the GOD OF THE UNIVERSE laid before her:

"'I am the Lord's servant,' Mary answered. 'May it be to me as you have said.'" (Luke 1:38)



Imagine if we all had this attitude about the things the Lord has called us to do in our lives.

Instead of this:

GOD: Brett, you're going to need to work a full time job in order to support yourself through grad school.  

Me: WHY?  THIS SUCKS, I'M AWAY FROM MY FAMILY AND FRIENDS. I'M ALL BY MYSELF I'M BURNING THE CANDLE AT BOTH ENDS AND MISSING OUT ON ALL THE FUN STUFF (caps indicate dramatic and exaggerated sobs). 

We'd have this:

Me: I am the Lord's servant.  May it be to me as you have said.  I know you have my greatest interest at heart. I know this education is preparing me for something big and wonderful.  I know you don't want me to be slammed with debt upon my graduation.


May it be unto you as the Lord has said this season.  





And if my humble blog post was not enough to lift your spirits if you're blue this season, hopefully this PRECIOUS video will (compliments of Miss Becky Honaker):



Merry Christmas, friends.

-Brett Elizabeth
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