Shadow Of Victory

Monday, 13 December 2010

DEAR SANTA

Its that time of year again and Christmas is fast approaching. In our family Christmas has always been a great time not just because we celebrate the birth of our Saviour but also because we all love to be together and to do fun stuff. As I have thought back over the many Christmas times we have shared I am again reminded of how blessed we are as a family...we have no feuds going on...no nasty relatives...no unresolved arguments....no unforgiveness....

Please don't think for one moment we are the golden family...far from it...we have a couple of rattly skeletons hanging around our past but have worked hard together as a family to keep going and pressing through so that the love and grace and peace of Jesus keeps us bonded together.

One thing we have always done each year at this time is Chris and I write a letter to Santa...we started to do this at the same time as each of the kids wrote theirs. It has carried on as a sort of family joke...I say stuff like....

"I believe in Santa...always have and always will...there has to be a Santa cos otherwise how do I get all the stuff on my list"

So...on 1st December I write my letter..sit it on a shelf in living room and it disappears(!) within hours and lo and behold ....pressies appear under the tree on Christmas morning. I know (!) that the kids still secretly believe that Santa exists as why would they be asking me if I have written my letter yet..!!! In fact there are times I wonder about my kids as they often tell me "the elves been busy."

Christmas traditions can make the very best memories and as a family we have somehow or other made a few that have outlasted childhood...


Always a real tree...chosen with care..not too fat not too thin...just right..
Always wait till 1st Dec before we talk or plan Christmas..
Always wait till 1st Dec to play Christmas music..
Always try and be together...may not actually be on the day as each child has grown and made their own families ...but somehow we still manage a day when we celebrate our time together...
Always try to go to church together if we are home for Christmas.
Always have crackers and wear the hats and tell the jokes
Always play the game "what colour is your hat "
Always stay up till after midnight on Christmas eve...and I get to open one pressie before I go to bed...
Always walk the dogs....
Always watch a new DVD together....or The Royle Family on TV.
Always have our pudding in the evening...never at the table..


So many other things we have done together...either every year or for a season depending on how old the children were. A couple of lasting memories and traditions we have passed on to our children ..it has been so lovely watching and taking part in their own versions ....

Disguising the pressie...if a really small pressie...wrap it up in huge box or multiple layers.
Hiding the pressie and have them hunt it out with clues.
Using scrabble letters to spell it out...I remember the year we booked Mike on to an Oak Hall Ski trip and used an M&M wee toy...the M&M man was on skis ...big clue...and we emptied the sweets and put in scrabble letter spelling out Oak Hall Ski Trip....took him ages to get it and when he did.....he burst into tears...and bear in mind he was 19 at the time.!


So...each year ..1st Dec my letter would be written.It rarely had any surprises.....usually a couple of books..a CD...some perfume ..smellies...writing paper...and yay for Santa my wee bundle under the tree would be..a couple of books ..a CD...some perfume and smellies and writing paper.!!

This year it is now the 13th Dec and I still have not written my letter to Santa..Chris has done his and the Elves have spirited it away and are no doubt busy busy busy....and I guess they are getting a bit frustrated that my letter has still not appeared. I woke this morning with the reason why I haven't written my letter so clear in my mind. I still believe (!) in Santa I still believe passionately in memories and traditions and still look forward with more excitement and joy this year in particular due to Elisha being with us but still...No Letter....and the reason seems to be..

This year I have absolutely nothing I want...or need
...I have everything.

My life is complete...I have a great husband and count myself among the women who are blessed by still loving and caring for the man in my life..I have three great kids who have husbands and partners that I love and care for...I have more than just a "roof over my head"...my home is warm and comfortable...I have a relationship with Jesus and know His love and grace each day....I am part of a Faith community where I can grow and know God better. I have the greatest job in the world where I get to care for other peoples children ...(and get paid for it)....I have some strong friendships where I know I can be myself. After years of financial stress and debt we now are in a position where we can know a bit of freedom and where Chris can relax after working solidly over his entire adult life....and last but not least..We have been given the gift of a grandchild.!!..You know when your heart is full and you think life cant be any better...and then God squashes it all down and pours out more blessing..well Elisha is that for us...

So...this year my letter to Santa will get written..I have promised the Elves to get it done today...it will have the usual requests of a book/ CD etc but along with that letter I may also write a letter of Praise and Thanksgiving to God..

He is the Giver of life...
He is the Sustainer of life...
He is our Provider..
He is our Healer..
He is our Saviour...
He is our Prince of Peace....


In the midst of all this I am mindful of those who may not have this peace...I know from the response I saw at church yesterday than many of my friends and community have pain in their lives at this moment in time...Christmas for some will not be a time of joy...of family....of good memories or traditions and as I close this entry I am praying for peace to reign in all our lives ...not just at Christmas but all through the coming year. May you and all your kith and kin know peace and joy this Christmas.

Isaiah Ch 8 Verse 6
For unto us a child is born ,to us a child is given, and the government will be upon his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counsellor ,Mighty God, Everlasting Father,Prince of Peace.

2 comments:

Alijane said...

Irene, this is so special, thanks for sharing it with us, needed a tissue!

hanaprice said...

I needed to read that. Your family fills me with such joy. Thank you x