Monday, December 02, 2013

Exchanging Garden Bulbs for Advent/Christmas Bulbs/MANN

Change is good; it keeps me on my toes. I am reminded not to change 'just for the sake of change', but to find ways to bring newness and variety to my life. The season of Advent invites us to prepare: one week at a time as we move toward Christmas. Each week brings change with a new awareness of God's gifts of Christ to a broken world. Christmas is not always a happy time. Yet, in days of depression, grief or sorrow when some might wish this season over, there is goodness. And so we experience opposites, contradictions, and change as natural as plum pudding and tinsel.
A beautiful garden whether it's yours or mine pleases me in the summer and encourages me to go home and plant some seeds. Children's laughter as they slid down the barn hill brings back pleasant memories and makes me wish that I could do that just one more time. I bring in the garden bulbs already anticipating next year's colour and go to the basement to dig out the Christmas bulbs knowing that the first flood of light on the house roof will earn applause. I take great joy in seeing the still green grass show through the snow even in winter's infancy. As I approach the longest day of the year, I know that the very next day will have a few more moments of daylight.
What are some of the ways we can bring change, transformation and satisfaction into our life and the lives of others? Look at a ball of yarn in a store window and picture the sweater or mitts under the tree. Listen to an old man hum and make a plan to offer your gift of music to someone. Watch children at play and learn from them. Remember the loved one who is no longer present this Christmas and give a gift to a needy child in his or her memory. Look over your family tree and see those who are alone at Christmas and invite them to your table. Reflect on those conversations and exchanges with others that have grown a bitter root and find a way to reconcile. Stop and share a smile and handshake at the post office or stoplight. This is God at work through you.
Meet this Advent/Christmas season with energy, enthusiasm, anticipation, and hope in spite of any lingering shadows. Turn the everyday, ordinary and mundane events of each day into possibilities of a blessing. Look at your interaction with other people as seeds of hope and fresh beginnings in their lives. Give the greatest gift of love and offer it to other people in ways that will make a difference to them. Be assured that when you share material, spiritual or emotional gifts, goodness will be transformed to meet the needs of those around you. That's another miracle of the season.
Aggie's Voice was launched October 29th at the former Burgoyne General Store.
A Rare Find will be launched Saturday, Dec.7th, Faith Family Books/Scarborough.                                    


Peter Black said...

Thank you Donna.
You've showered us with *wake-up-to-the-world-around-you* ideas and gifts of light and joy, befitting the season, and that are good for any time of the year! :)

Donna Mann said...

Thank you Peter. Writing this was something like 'preaching to the preacher'. I had opportunity to build one of those reconciling bridges today - easy to spot, but not as easy to walk across.

Glynis said...

This was a lovely, focussed post, Donna. Very well said and a good challenge to all of us to realize that we can do plenty to make this a better world - at Christmas or otherwise. To God be the glory!

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