Friday, December 23, 2016

my Christmas card, my Ebenezer...

As I grow older, nothing brings me more joy in the Christmas season than to receive Christmas cards from friends and people whom I consider family. I love reading through the updates, seeing all of the matching outfits, and oo-ing and ah-ing over pretty designs and words. Also, I feel the need to tell you that one of the couples from my church (and very dear friends) has a photo of President Obama holding their sweet baby girl on their Christmas card which means they definitely won Christmas.

Over the past few years, I have wanted to make a Christmas card. But here is the deal... I am single. Is a single woman allowed to make a Christmas card? Is that awkward? What would I even put on it? A photo of just myself? Of me and a dog? (I don't even have a dog!) Christmas cards are for married people, for big families who have lived big years, at least, that's what I have always thought. To me, I felt like if I made a Christmas card, it would highlight the lack I feel in my life... no husband, no children, no family. Just me in a field of Christmas trees. Festive, but lonely. 

This year, I made a Christmas card. It's festive and full of life; they are full of my favorite memories and my favorite people. As I hand them out to my community, their excitement and joy overwhelms me. This card may just be a card to my friends, one that will be set on a mantle or hung on a garland, but to me it serves as an ebenezer, a mark of God's goodness in my life. I look to this card and see fullness rather than lack; my life is FULL of people and friends and adventures and ministry and it's beautiful.

In 1 Samuel 7, we see that Samuel commemorates his victory over the Philistines by raising a stone, an ebenezer. This Hebrew "stone of help" would remind him of God's faithfulness, that He has been his strength, his portion, his literal rock. 

"Then Samuel took a stone and set it between Mizpah and Shen, and named it Ebenezer, saying, "Thus far the Lord has helped us..."" - 1 Samuel 7:12

This Christmas card allows me to see Him and say the same as Samuel, thus far the Lord has helped me. Where I perceive a lack in my life, Jesus has filled it. After all, that is what Christmas is all about, right? Our fulfillment, our Savior, has arrived. 

Thus far the Lord has helped me, what a beautiful truth to remember. 

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