And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly. But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, "Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins." (Matthew 1:19-21 ESV)
And the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end." (Luke 1:30-33 ESV)
 The house is insanely quiet.  The kids are gone to the grandparents, and Troy still at work.  I'm finally getting around to wrapping presents and kicked all the furry kids out of the room. tv, no radio.  Just me and a pile of gifts.
Gifts for family, gifts for friends.  Gifts which celebrate the birth of our Savior.

I find it completely amazing that after 38 Christmases, the story of Jesus' birth unfolds something new for me each year.  Born of a virgin, his first bed a cattle feeder.  A husband who trusted God enough to marry bride already with child.  A young mother who knew her difficult right of passage was the best for an entire world of people she didn't even know.  Mary and Joseph...they trusted God in the midst of circumstances they could have never imagined themselves in.  They trusted even though things weren't easy and the way they would have done things isn't how it was to unfold, God knew what was best.

I've spent quite a bit of time asking "Why, God?" and "Why not God?" lately.  Seems the straightest, easiest paths laid before my eyes are not those for which he has chosen me to pursue.  Yet through this He has taught me to have a stronger faith by keeping my eyes on him and not on the path ahead of me.

Today, I celebrate the precious season and the tiny king who gave us such a remarkable gift.  I also celebrate the growing faith he has placed in me to know I don't have to see the path ahead to know I'm going in the right direction.

May each of you have a blessed Christmas season, focused on the reason why we celebrate.


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