Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas Mighty Men

Ezekiel and Gabriel,
It's just after midnight here in the States. Mommy and Daddy watched the clock all (Christmas Eve) day long for when you most likely woke up in Ethiopia, had breakfast, took your first nap on this day we celebrate Christmas - December 25, 2012. We have been praying over you like crazy today. It's been an especially hard day to be apart. We know the nannies in Addis love you and are giving you their best care. We know your heavenly Father loves you abundantly more than even we can. He is with you, and that gives us reason to hope and rejoice. It will be awhile, but you might one day know the same reality that lives in Mommy and Daddy's heart this season: hope, gratitude, joy, anticipation, and nausea. All at the same time. :) When Aunt Addie and Uncle Eli wake up to open presents in a few hours, we will be enjoying every minute of their discoveries, and thinking of you.

Things Mommy saw this Christmas that she wants to always remember:
- Traditions be darned. They can be fun and seem special, but they do not hold (or hardly reflect) the meaning of Christmas. As our family repeats things we enjoy doing together and the giving of gifts, we need to do it with our hands open, remembering how humbly our God came into the world. Mommy wants to remember that we are not entitled to material gifts in the name of Christmas. Salvation is ours. (There's no touching that with the "symbolic" gift of a new-favorite want.) Gifts and traditions were never a part of Christ's first night in Bethlehem. Our family can take them or leave them, but let's not get stuck on them.

-God sent His Son as a baby. Mommy has a new understanding of what a deep act of love this was as she waits for her sweet babies on the other side of an ocean. God sent Jesus, His one son, in this most vulnerable state - turning Him over to the world for a time. What a "gift" this was since God knew our treatment of Him would be far less than what God could offer, and what Jesus deserved. 

-Anticipation is a wonderful thing. It has a purpose, and should not be disregarded or minimized. Addie and Eli went to bed with great anticipation of Christmas morning. We could have said, "Ah, heck. Here are your presents, open them now!" And Eli at least, probably would have jumped at the opportunity. But in the end, we all know that wouldn't have been half of the experience they will have in the morning. Grabbing the things we desire out of turn only decreases our satisfaction in having them. God's timing is perfect. His plans for us are good, and we want to experience them to the full! Your Daddy and I once thought we would NEVER make it through our season of engagement as we longed to be together, to never have to leave one another, and to enjoy our union to the full. We considered rushing a wedding. (We considered cheating on the rules.) We were reminded by loving people that it was God's plan for us to wait on those things and that He was still preparing us to be one in His eyes. We chose to trust Him in the wait, and He sustained us. We are now SO grateful for that season of anticipation, for the growth we had individually with the Lord, for the respect we gained for one another, and for the blessing we've received for honoring Him. Our wait to have you in our arms is HARD, but we are trusting His timing, knowing the blessing to come when we are all together is well worth it, and that it's coming SOON. But there's a greater wait still... For the rest of our time on this earth, we will wait with anticipation for our Savior, whose first coming to this world we celebrate on Christmas, to come for the last time. He will bring the fulfillment of the plan that He began. We will finally see His complete purpose, judgement and will, and be satisfied. So babies, thank you for the opportunity to learn better what our God means for us to know. Thank you for practice walking out the faith we didn't know we had until God used this opportunity to show us. Glean the truth from yo' Mama; anticipation is a wonderful thing, whether you can see it now or not. 

“But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.” - Galatians 4:4

Merry First Christmas, Sweet Boys.
-Love, Your Mama

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