“Because of God’s tender mercy, the morning light from heaven is about to break upon us, to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, and to guide us to the path of peace.” — Luke 1:78-79, NLT
There is this melancholy air during the holidays… that bittersweet nostalgia, those memories that haunt us, the closing of a year, the grief of missing those who are not here to celebrate the season. You hear that note of sadness in some of the music of the season, I’ll Be Home…, Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas… , Charlie Brown’s Holiday song with its “…olden times in ancient rhymes….” I hear it in a loved one’s voice as we change another set of plans so that we can remain distanced, though we hold the bonds that began before this season of masks and isolation. I hear it in the echo of our home of two, resounding with our own conversations, aching to fill it with family, friends, the closeness of fellowship. I hear it in the stories of first responders caring for the ill and searching for more words of comfort to speak to families who must receive news from the cold static of a phone. I hear it in the sighs that seem to began all of our prayers in this very difficult season, but there is this undeniable hope. If we go deeper than the separation, loneliness, despair, there is the One who is the fullness of love and joy, and that grace fills all the spaces of shadow with the light of understanding, the comfort of life beyond the timetables of any grief, any pain of this life.
—C.L. Fisher, December 2020
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