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home

Well, I’m behind on Advent days, but this is in honor of day 6.

HOME

My husband and I recently decided to stay in town for Christmas, rather than travel to my family 5.5 hours south of us. This is because my husband’s family will be in our town.

It’s our first married Christmas. There’s some sadness about missing Christmas with my immediate family, but my husband’s family has become mine so, that’s a precious addition – and thus, I will be with “my” family either way. Moreover, marriage is a massive change to so many parts of life, I think it’s another area of stretching and renewing my mindset. And that’s beautiful.

Then, I got thinking about good ol’ Mary and Joseph and their journey from Naz to Bhem. I thought about the adoption of all future people into the family of God they were inviting. I thought about their sacrifice, their vision, their calling, and their unity.

Wow. I don’t know where their hearts most felt at home, but I theorize that after living so many places together, “home” was truly wherever they were together. Moreover, the presence of God united them, even while physically separate. It’s interesting, this spatial misconception we often have about separation and geography. We’re one in the spirit. We’re together.

We’re home.

Christmas gets Christmas-er the more we let our minds be renewed to think like God does.

“The Invitation” by Oriah Mountain Dreamer

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It doesn’t interest me
what you do for a living.
I want to know
what you ache for
and if you dare to dream
of meeting your heart’s longing.

It doesn’t interest me
how old you are.
I want to know 
if you will risk 
looking like a fool
for love
for your dream
for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn’t interest me
what planets are 
squaring your moon…
I want to know
if you have touched
the centre of your own sorrow
if you have been opened
by life’s betrayals
or have become shrivelled and closed
from fear of further pain.

I want to know
if you can sit with pain
mine or your own
without moving to hide it
or fade it
or fix it.

I want to know
if you can be with joy
mine or your own
if you can dance with wildness
and let the ecstasy fill you 
to the tips of your fingers and toes
without cautioning us
to be careful
to be realistic
to remember the limitations
of being human.

It doesn’t interest me
if the story you are telling me
is true.
I want to know if you can
disappoint another
to be true to yourself.
If you can bear
the accusation of betrayal
and not betray your own soul.
If you can be faithless
and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see Beauty
even when it is not pretty
every day.
And if you can source your own life
from its presence.

I want to know
if you can live with failure
yours and mine
and still stand at the edge of the lake
and shout to the silver of the full moon,
“Yes.”

It doesn’t interest me
to know where you live
or how much money you have.
I want to know if you can get up
after the night of grief and despair
weary and bruised to the bone
and do what needs to be done
to feed the children.

It doesn’t interest me
who you know
or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand
in the centre of the fire
with me
and not shrink back.

It doesn’t interest me
where or what or with whom
you have studied.
I want to know 
what sustains you
from the inside
when all else falls away.

I want to know
if you can be alone 
with yourself
and if you truly like
the company you keep
in the empty moments.

By Oriah © Mountain Dreaming,
 from the book The Invitation
 published by HarperONE, San Francisco,
 1999 All rights reserved

PIONEER (song by Rick Pino)

I heard this song for the first time yesterday and it was like eating Ritz crackers as a six year old with a tummy ache:
calming, strengthening, and reassuring.

And so to all who are called to blaze new trails through thick terrain, take heart. The reason your journey is irresistible is YOU WERE BORN FOR THIS. The world needs you to take your place in history and in the future.

You can do it! And with great glory, you will. The world awaits the revealing of the sons and daughters of God.

As a friend recently wrote,

“Cynicism is the language of cowards – always think the worst, you’ll never be disappointed.

It takes courage to have hope.”

And as the psalmist wrote, “I would have despaired, but I know I will see God’s goodness here on earth” (Psalm 27:13)

HAVE HOPE!!!!!!!!!

Jesus is the HOPE of the nations. How can we not have hope when the embodiment of hope lives inside us?

Make that new path. Pave that road. Believe change is possible. Believe Jesus. Generations to come will be grateful you did.