In the middle of the mess

Here I am once again a stranger to my own blog. One would think that after an extended period of non-posting that finding something to say and then saying it would be easy. So much left unsaid means that much left to write about, right? I’ve discovered the opposite to be true: an unintended writing break carries the unintended consequence of making the return to writing all the more difficult. Or, such is my experience. Can anyone concur?

One of the things I’m finding it hard to write about though it seems it should be an easy enough topic: our Christmas. Some of the highlights: our church’s children’s music program. Food. Family. Giving. Receiving. Our church’s first Christmas Eve service. Carols. The Nativity Story. Humbly pondering God made flesh. Much to be grateful for. Much to inspire worship and wonder. It was good. It was merry. It was also hectic and exhausting and, dare I admit it, stressful.
And today, after all that was merry and bright is now over and done, I am left with the familiar post-Christmas detritus. Boxes, ribbon and stray pieces of wrapping paper littering the floor. Trees and decorations needing to be taken down and put away. Exhaustion. Lethargy. Wishing I’d savored and enjoyed instead of hurried and hustled. Glad it’s over but full of regret that I didn’t do and be all that I’d wished and wanted.
On a side table in our den is a small, white Nativity that I purchased at a craft show the first Christmas we were married. I treasure the simple, ceramic figures not because they are particularly valuable but because of the sentimentality of our first Christmas together as well as its depiction of the miracle of Christmas, God’s indescribable Gift of His Son, Jesus. Mary, Joseph, the angel, the shepherds–how humble, how beautiful, how amazing. The Word became flesh and dwelt among us. Incredible.
Today my humble nativity shares table space with, among other things, a remote, some candy wrappers, a half full container of Whoppers, a couple of books and an empty tea glass. It’s a mess. It’s my life. Part of me is ashamed at the apparent disregard for the Nativity. A larger part of me is overwhelmed by the realization that just as the small ceramic Jesus is surrounded by the litter and rubble of our home life, so it is that right in the middle of the mess that is my real life, He came. He emptied Himself, taking the form of a man, a baby, not to be put on a remote shelf to be admired from afar. His Nativity–His birth, His life, His death, His resurrection–all are to invade my real life: the mess, the sin, the insufficiencies, the complete and total failures. In spite of it all and because of it all, He came. He seeks. He saves. He forgives. He redeems.

Author: Lisa Spence

Wife, mother, Bible teacher, bibliophile, occasional blogger

8 thoughts on “In the middle of the mess”

  1. Love your thoughts here, Lisa. And it's always nice to see you back at it. Just keep trying, plugging away, WRITING!! It's what you do.

  2. Amen! You found your voice, Lisa!And yes, I totally understand. I am in much the same situation–a virtual stranger to my blog and haven't yet found the way back. . .

  3. Wow – you found something great to write! I loved the song I discovered and posted on Saturday (the 26th) – great for the post-Christmas let-down!

  4. I, too, find it's hard to return to blogging. Especially when sharing about the "everyday"…somehow when I try to put it into words to convey what it means to me, I come up so short & it all seems so mundane.I do love your thoughts, though. Glad to see you back!

  5. I have those same thoughts after a "blog-cation." I have so much to say, it's like my mind is congested. I'm all stopped up.

  6. The manger in the middle of our mess…it writes well, sister. Preaches even better. Glad to visit you again. I hope you'll continue to pen your heart. You always do it so well.Happy New Year.peace~elaine

  7. Wow, wow, wow…I have had that "same" pressure when coming back from an unscheduled blogging break, but life happens, and we know that.When you do write your words are chock full of wisdom, honesty, wit, and transparency.And for that…I am thankful!Hope you are resting some now…Melissa

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