This is one of those years when Christmas is going to be anything but traditional.

It’s our first “regular” Christmas at home since Nick died…no trip has been planned to keep our minds occupied and a little distant from our pain.

It’s our first Christmas with Erich married and living away and not with us for Christmas Eve and morning..we are celebrating several days early with him and Mallory.

It’s our first Christmas without Evan.  He will be in Peru meeting Maria’s family and learning all about the way Christmas is celebrated in her culture.  We already celebrated Christmas with both Evan and Maria. 🙂

I’m having surgery next Wednesday, so I’ll be somewhat “not fully present” for the actual holiday..I think God knew this might be the easiest way to have so many changes so quickly in our family’s normally “children-filled” Christmas morning memories. 

It seems like overnight we went from a family of five little eager ones anxiously awaiting Christmas morning to a family of two teenage kids who in some ways seem to have temporarily replaced the “wonder” of Christmas with technology.

I could easily slip into a feeling of sadness, but then I remember something that makes me smile………..

Christmas didn’t begin so that I could have perfect holiday memories.

Christmas wasn’t created so that little kids could hover around a beautifully lit tree waiting to open gifts wrapped especially for them.

Christmas is what happened when Jesus came.

Christmas is what changed everything about the future of mankind.

Christmas is knowing that the greatest gift EVER given was wrapped not in paper but in swaddling clothes.

mary and baby jesus

If anyone ever had “a different kind of Christmas” it was Mary and Joseph.

I wonder how they celebrated every year after that first year? 

When was the first nativity set made? 

Did they know how special that manger scene would become through the ages?

I’m thankful tonight for a different kind of Christmas…….

It’s reminding me of what the season is truly all about.

It’s not about me.

It’s about Him.

And I am so thankful for Him!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!