Holly dazed

Hot chocolate.  Candied apples.  Godivas.  M&Ms. Peppermint mocha.  I've had my share since Thanksgiving.  And now part of me is in a holly daze.  Christmas arrives in four days.  

In the aftermath of the Sandy Hook elementary school massacre, I continue to cry.  I've read the obituary of each child and adult angel.  I've watched the updates as the Newtown community digs deep into their souls to find a new normal.  As my new normal now includes a four-month-old, the Sandy Hook tragedy touches my heart in a way I could never have imagined.  A new mama, I look into my daughter's face, and she peers fiercely into my being. Her wide, innocent brown eyes light up my every day when I pick her up from her night's slumber.  Babbling, she smiles and greets me "good morning."  

How to forge a sense of hope through the holidays in the midst of what has become not just a small town, Rockwell-esque, but international loss?  How to go from mournful shock to a faithful holly daze?

As festivities approach, the meaning of Christmas makes itself known as each Sandy Hook family survives each passing day through the death of their loved ones.  As members of a human community, our task is to continue to grow our hearts for the miracle of every day . . . and share the job of that miracle - Life.  It goes on.  The best way to celebrate the miracle of Life is through authentic interactions with others.  Those around the world have demonstrated the appreciation of precious lives, little miracles, through their outpouring of support.  

The holiday spirit asks us to put the true meaning of Christmas into action because the Christmas spirit is alive not just during Christmastime, but through the entire year.  

May your holly daze be earnest and full of grace as you find quiet time to be intentional.  May your days always be merry and bright.