Friday, December 25, 2009

Born To Die

December 24, 2009

I have just one question. Where did 2009 go? So many things happened in such a short amount of time I can hardly believe a year has come and gone. As with any year, we had the good and the bad as always. But lots of big events took place this For starters we sold mom’s house in Texas. This obviously was a very hard thing to do. Not physically, but emotionally. Initially we thought that a friend of moms was going to buy her house, so she didn’t bother with putting the house on the market and instead focused all her attention on doing some packing and retiring from the Texas school system. But, just before it was time to move, plans had changed and mom needed to locate a Realtor.

We put her house on the market and would you believe that the house had a contract on it in just 3 days! The LORD took care of that one in a heart beat. He is so amazing! We witnessed His mighty hand at work all around us during the entire process. The move went very well and mom was on her way to Alabama. We moved her in with us in early June and at that point spent the entire summer looking for houses that would work for all of us to live in together. But to no avail. In the mean time, the LORD was continuing His hand of provision in landing mom a new job at the middle school here (just before the school year started) doing what she loves most…teaching Special Ed. students. And while it was evident we weren’t going to find that perfect home for us, the LORD had something different planned all along. He was building us a house.

I wish I could tell you all of the details that go along with that statement. They are truly amazing. This house is exactly what we were looking for all along. (Of course it is, The LORD is building it!) Another neat thing about this house is that it not only has the perfect set up for mom, but it has lots of extra bedrooms for kids! And since we only have 2 kids….you may be wondering (if you don’t already know) that we are expecting more! The LORD has drawn our hearts toward adoption over the last year and we’ve got our sights set for a baby girl in India! We have been through the most interesting journey of our lives going through the process of adopting a child. We have filled out mounds of paper work and had our family raked over with a fine tooth comb. It has been interesting to say the least.

But we have learned so much about the LORD than we ever expected in this journey of adoption. We’ve learned more about the Father’s heart for the orphan as well as the whole concept of our own spiritual adoption in Christ Jesus. It’s been a mind blowing awakening. In my statement earlier I mentioned “kids”. We are working through the possibility of getting a sibling group of girls from India, but if the LORD wills just for us to have one this time around….then we plan to adopt again. There are too many babies out there that need a home for us just to stop with one. We’ll leave all the rest up to the LORD and just walk forward in obedience as He leads. I hope to be writing this time next year about a new member of our family!

So, lots of good as I mentioned this year but along with the good, came the bad. We had to endure yet another loss this year. I wasn’t sure my heart could actually take losing another loved one. This makes three years in a row that we’ve had to say goodbye to one of my closest family members. First it was my mamaw, then my father and this year it was my papaw. That’s too tough to even absorb. When we lost my papaw, we lost one of the kindest and most gentle souls I’ve ever known. He was a man who gave of himself to others all the time. I watched him literally give up the things on earth that he dearly enjoyed to care for my mamaw when her health was declining. With what little he did have he was always sending me checks in the mail letting me know that “he couldn’t think of anyone he’d rather give his money to”. He probably did that with everyone. Such a precious man. My papaw was loved by everyone and he is dearly missed.

The last few days, I have been reflecting on yet another who gave himself for others. My mind races to Philippians 2:6-9 that says, “Though he (Jesus) was God, he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to. Instead, he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a servant and was born as a human being. When he appeared in human form, he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross.” (NLT) Our pastor says every year “that the main emphasis of Christmas is not on the infancy of Jesus but on the deity of Jesus.” When you look at it like that you begin to realize (as much as humanly possible) all that He gave up to be born in human likeness. Jesus Christ gave up all that was rightly His to step into time to be born as a human being and ultimately humbled himself in obedience unto death.

Let’s be honest. When we think of Christmas, do we just see a baby lying in a manger, or do we see the King of the universe stepping out of heaven, giving up all His privileges to become an ordinary baby headed for the cross? Yes, He was born in Bethlehem but He was headed for Calvary. Putting it another way, He was born to die. Why? Love. It was love that drove Christ to such a humble state for our sinful account so that for all who truly believe might be saved! It’s one of those things you have to ponder deeply to even begin to conceive the slightest bit of its profundity. I’m still trying to wrap my mind around it. Ephesians 3:18-19 That you may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Trees, lights, presents, family and food are all nice at Christmas. But, I’ll take the humble King. Will you worship Jesus with us this Christmas? Not as an infant but as King, born to die so that we might be saved!

Merry Christmas!