Our family decided to brave the cold and go in search of a Christmas tree Tuesday night. Conveniently for us, anything south of where we live is Damascus, which is farm land and tree farm territory. So we had to drive about three minutes to get to a you-cut tree farm.
The sunsets have been pretty spectacular around here lately, and Tuesday was no exception. We arrived at the farm as the sun said its farewell in pink and gold. After explaining what we were looking for to the friendly tree farm owners, they pointed out the best spot in their yard (because the farm was, in fact, their yard) for us to search. Undoubtedly they knew what they were talking about as we chose the first tree we came across. Lane quickly chopped it down and we took it back to the barn to have it shaken and baled.
As we stood in line we chatted happily, James drank hot cider, and Christmas music played over a loud speaker. I danced around to try to keep warm and keep Eleanor entertained in the front pack (she decidedly does not like cold weather). The song "Joy to the World" came on. I sang along:
He rules the world with truth and grace
And makes the nations prove
The glories of His righteousness
And wonders of His love...
"Wonders of His love." I feel like they are all around me, all the time. These wonders that display His love so subtly and yet without a doubt, and that is the perfect term for them.
a beautiful sunset.. the smell of freshly cut doug fir... an excited toddler and snuggly baby... hot cider...
...and wonders of His love...
The next day Eleanor woke up early and still tired from her nap. I brought her out to the living room and sat down on the couch. James cuddled up next to me with a book for us to read and she fell back asleep on me. We spent a rare, but sweet half hour curled up on the couch together- Elle sleeping and James and I reading stories. He put some stickers in his story-coloring book while I basked in the moment.
The tree made me smile. For obvious reasons, all the ornaments had to be hung three feet and up (especially silly looking on a five foot tree), and they are mostly clumped in one spot due to our decorator being three and a half years old. Our home is certainly not glamorous, but as I sat and looked around at our family photos, James' art, and toys everywhere, I felt an overwhelming gratitude for that place and that moment.
my sleeping baby... our hideous Christmas tree... James' art... our warm home... a moment of rest...
...and wonders of His love...
And then that night, after a long day, I was in the basement attempting to keep the kids' occupied while I waited for Lane to get home. He was late, dinner was late, and I was exhausted. We were throwing beach balls and running around to get out some energy when I glanced outside.
One brilliant star and a perfect, bright crescent moon shown in the sky, lighting up the pond behind our house. I called James over. "Look at the moon and the Christmas star." I said (it could have been a satellite for all I know). "Do you think it is the same star that guided the wise men after baby Jesus was born?" His eyes filled with wonder, he nodded and smiled his big goofy grin.
the moon to light up the night... an awe-filled child... the star of Bethlehem, telling of our Savior's birth...
...and wonders, and wonders
of His love.
Here's to a wonder-filled Christmas season,