This fall has been full of the unexpected. Most of the unexpected things were painful things. While there were many positive moments, the reality is that things have changed this fall. Family members now have medical conditions that will never go away. Another family member died. In all the difficulties of this fall, I have realized that I have a choice. We all have a choice. We can stay where we are, wishing for what once was, recalling the better days of the past, and playing the “if only” game, or we can move forward. This does not mean that we should not take the time we need to grieve, regain health, or accept our new situation, but it does mean that there is a point when we need to choose our next steps.
I am choosing to move forward. I am preparing for Christmas. I am not just buying presents, baking, and decorating, but I am preparing my heart. Each year we are given this season of preparation prior to our celebration of Jesus birth. It is not just a celebration of what happened in the past, but it is a next step. It is an opportunity for Jesus to be birthed in our lives in a new and powerful way. It is a next step in our lives as we grow in God’s grace.
No matter what your fall or year has been like, I hope you will join me in moving forward. I hope you will join in preparing yourself for the birth of Jesus, celebrating the new life that is offered to all of us. We are moving forward.