Hey there! Thanks for stopping by my blog, Little Things and Sunshine. My goal with this blog has always been to help people find joy in life’s little blessings, but I also need to be honest about the darkness. After all, if it never rained would we truly look forward to the sun?
The past few months have been a bit of a blurry jumble for me. If I’m to be truthful, I will have to admit that I’ve had a lot of darkness over my mind and heart. When you’re in a “slump” or just feel down, it’s very hard to find motivation or inspiration. The world can seem empty of new ideas. Maybe it’s part of the winter. Feeling down or even depressed is supposed to be a normal thing for people this time of year. Perhaps it’s the darkness and bleakness that wraps around this season like a coat. As humans, we tend to grasp onto this darkness so quickly. At least I know I do. This morning (Christmas Eve) I had to sing In the Bleak Mid-Winter for my church’s service, and it really opened my heart. The whole song just made me come to terms with how unbelievably broken we all are. Broken plans, broken words, broken friends, broken self, a broken world. It forced me to examine everything that I had let my heart settle into and become comfortable with. I had become stuck in the bleakness of winter.
Thankfully there is One who is not held by the winter, but instead holds it in the palms of His hands. God sent His son Jesus Christ to take on our sorrows that night so long ago. He didn’t send Him as a dignified ruler, but as a baby who would spend His first nights in a stable. There was no great ceremony acknowledging that He had finally arrived, but three wise men and a few lowly shepherds came to bow before His manger. I wonder if they knew what I’ve been avoiding this whole Christmas season – that Christ came, not to promise that we wouldn’t face troubles, but to be Our Rock in all seasons. He didn’t come so that we could open presents and curl up next to a warm fire. Things break and fires eventually burn out. Christ came in the middle of the bleak mid-winter to give us hope and peace that will not ever fade.
This Christmas, my prayer is that God will give me joy and peace when those two don’t seem possible. I pray that He continues to use the darkness to bring me closer to Him. I also pray that God would open my eyes and heart to know that His glory is in every situation.
I know that the storm is not over yet, but I also know that I don’t have to walk through it alone. Christ has given us salvation that we may go in peace.
Merry Christmas! I hope that you travel safely and take time to remember The Joy of the World.
P.S. Take a moment to read the lyrics and listen to In the Bleak Mid-Winter…
“In the bleak midwinter, frosty wind made moan,
earth stood hard as iron, water like a stone;
snow had fallen, snow on snow, snow on snow,
in the bleak midwinter, long ago.
Our God, heaven cannot hold him, nor earth sustain;
heaven and earth shall flee away when he comes to reign.
In the bleak midwinter a stable place sufficed
the Lord God Almighty, Jesus Christ.
Now my eyes have seen;
Soli Deo Gloria!
He, salvation brings
As the Lord has promised,
I may go in peace
What can I give him, poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb;
if I were a Wise Man, I would do my part;
yet what I can I give him: give my heart.”
— ORIG. MUSIC BY HOLST AND DVORAK. ORIG. WORDS BY CHRISTINA ROSSETTI. ADDITIONAL WORDS, MUSIC, AND ARRANGEMENT BY KEITH GETTY AND KRISTYN GETTY