Dear Judah: Merry Christmas
This probably isn’t the best time to write you a letter. Christmas is creeping up next week, and in my own personal tradition, I still haven’t baked a cookie or wrapped a single present. I wouldn’t say that I love the last minute, but I certainly seem to always find myself here, wishing I would have done more to leave less on my plate this last week of advent. I suppose I’m writing this today because of what has happened in our country over the last week. Luckily you have no idea what has occurred. At the age of 2, you wouldn’t know the difference between a mass shooting in a school room half a country away, and the celebration of Arbor Day. And because of that Judah, I am incredibly jealous.
I wish this week I hadn’t watched the truth of this devastation unfold. I have felt scared and so desperately empathetic to the parents who dropped their babies off on Friday morning. But most of all, I have been faced with the reality yet again of the fragility of our life here together. A split second. An unimaginable decision from someone we don’t even know. A seemingly normal day… and suddenly we are left wondering, ‘did I do enough to make sure he knew he was loved today?’
But let’s forget about that for a second. Let’s talk instead about sovereignty. Let’s talk about the questions that have been raised regarding human nature. Let’s talk about how a country has come together to talk about grace and giving and the ability to lift each other up. Let’s talk about how we’ve all in some regard, taken responsibility for our neglect in loving well enough… The kind of love that moves mountains by being kind and regarding each other as valuable, even when it doesn’t make sense.
Buddy, this week has been very emotional for us all. So many tears have been shed. But through it, we have found ways to be giving and soft and accountable for our words and actions. Perhaps it’s good that it happened so close to Christmas. It’s this time of year that so many of us remember what it means to be without, and others remember what it means to go without for the sake of their brother or sister. It’s this time of year that our family means the most and our hearts are anticipating the arrival of love and memories are made. But more than any of that… it’s the time of year when we are reminded that our love is so lacking without the love of a God who would send His son to this earth to rescue us from so much evil.
Please hear me when I tell you that in the middle of this tragedy, in the middle of pain and suffering and unimaginable sadness, our God is so great. God saw this day before the earth rotated around the sun. It was because of this hurt we all feel today that He gave us His Son to heal and restore. He knew that by giving us flesh and self-serving hearts, we would cause pain to one another. But we are not without hope my dear son.
I’m 100% certain that if you live to be as old as me, you will see your share of what I have seen this week. The ugly and the lovely. The broken and the whole. The pain and the glory. And eventually, you’ll come to a fork in the road that causes you either become cynical and helpless or reverent and hopeful. Only you can control the eyes in which you see these things. Only you can choose which road you walk down. Pray for help Judah. We’ve been promised great things by a great God. He will help you understand His sovereignty. And through that… you’ll see hope.
Today I was reminded of the scripture Romans 15:13, where Paul writes “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing”
Hope and joy don’t come naturally to this world Judah. They are bi-products of belief in God. Don’t walk faithlessly alone in this desert as you see others do. It’s not always easy to put your belief and faith in the hands of something so many consider to be folly. But the result is joy, peace, understanding, kindness and every other thing your heart will long for from the world. But the world won’t give it to you. Only in the heart of God will you see those things.
Merry Christmas my dear child. This year and every year after, you will stand as the physical reminder of how God has so greatly blessed me on this earth. I pray you know the joy that lives in my heart today. I pray you know Him.
Your Sassy Momma