Monday, December 26, 2016

Frolic and Play the Austin Way!

This Norman Rockwell painting shows a worn-out Santa on December 26th -- and, like Santa, if all that’s left of Christmas for us -- frazzled, exhausted, a bulging credit card balance, and an over-full stomach, then we missed the true meaning of Christmas. I'll admit that after a full-of-fun-and-lots-of-activities week in Frisco, that just two hours of sleep before my drive to Austin, I was feeling a bit like this Santa during the day yesterday. LOL!

But, it was easy to get revived when these three boys awaited me. Such precious sights! Big brother, Braden, and sweet bride, Ruth, were on call-of-duty this weekend -- Braden at the fire department and Ruth at her ICIU nursing job, but I love this photo of Ruth dropping in to have lunch with her Honey yesterday. I was just in the nick of time to watch my kids opening their Christmas morning gifts. They must have been good kids all year long because "Santa" was sure good to them all. After a scrumptuous Christmas breakfast of chocolate gravy, cream gravy, bacon, biscuits and eggs, we headed out for a Christmas Day movie. This year it was the cute animated movie "Sing". We came home and enjoyed our Christmas dinner outside in 81 degree weather. -- certainly NOT a white Christmas, but we were okay with that! Then it was time for our annual pool tournament. And the winner and still champion.....Ryan!

Ryan and Shawntel will leave for their annual "honeymoon" trip this morning -- one they've taken every year since they first married, and as tradition holds, Nana is here to take care of the boys (once upon a time, it was Papa and Nana, but since Papa's exit to heaven, I carry on this sweet tradition with my boys).

Back to my opening paragraph about Santa, and all of us, being worn out after a very busy time leading up to Christmas Day. But, Christmas isn't just about that ONE MAIN EVENT. And neither is all the waiting, planning, organizing and preparing for OUR babies to be born, just about their ONE day of birth. It's about that day and every day after that. Jesus' birth-day was just the beginning of His incredible life. We need to recall how we looked at our babies and how Mary, Jesus' mother, looked at her baby boy, her Son -- a Son like no other Son - the very Son of God - and she saw in his sweet, soft, precious face -- the Redeemer of all mankind. A Redeemer who came to live on this earth to die - for our salvation and all mankind. Christmas is a part of the still unfolding story of God's love which began in the Garden of Eden and continues on from generation to generation, and in you and me as our own Christmas story is written of how God pursued us, loved us unconditionally and how His grace and unmerited favor kept us, gave us the courage to face tomorrow……and caused the peacjoy and love we experience at Christmas -- to stay alive in us each and every day.

As I frolic and play with my boys here in the Austin way for the next week or so, and even when I return to my day-to-day walk with God, I'll be remembering all that Christmas was AND IS because "Joy to the World" came for our taking and experiencing EVERYDAY!