Saturday, December 19, 2009

We went and got our Christmas tree today. Going to Kluck's, picking out the perfect tree, and taking it home and setting it up to Christmas music has been one of the deepest traditions of my family. It was wonderful and really feels like Christmas now...but not quite like it has before.

For those who don't know, my father has been serving our country in Iraq for the past year and will be returning home in late January. We are all happy to be back together so soon but the holidays aren't even close to the same without him. And, of course, on our way home, the song "I'll be Brave for Christmas" by Big Daddy Weave came on the radio and we all tried not to cry.

Sitting here, I realize a little more of what Christmas really means. It is so easy to get wrapped up in the gifts and the lights and the beautiful decorations but bright garlands and ornamented evergreens are not what this holiday is about. It is about something much bigger and MUCH better.

It is about a baby. Just one baby and yet, there was never another like Him. God the Son in flesh; born not to wealthy parents in a beautiful palace but to a peasant girl and his first crib, a manger where animals would eat. That was the entrance of the Son of God.

I miss my dad. Sometimes, I just have to grit my teeth at how deeply I miss him but I am not sorry that the Lord gave us this trial. It increased my love for my earthly father and now, it has showed me a little more of the love of my Heavenly One. That same pain that I am feeling now, God felt a hundred times over when His Son left heaven and came down as a Man and then, even more than that, when the Father had to actually turn away from His Son as Jesus bore the world's sins on His shoulders. That take your breath away, clench your jaw pain that I feel...He didn't just endure that, He purposefully endured it...for me.

He missed His Father, just like I do, and He loves me even more than that pain. I could not ask for a greater gift and I will never be able to thank Him enough!


  1. Praying for you, Raich! It's amazing you can look at this trial you are in in such a godly way! Your a great encouragment and witness to God! Can't wait till you can see your dad again! : )

  2. Hi Rachel
    I want to encourage you to go to this Blog:

    Hope is a fourteen year old girl who is fighting cancer since november
    Her Dad died a year ago, She really needs our prayers and please leave a word of encouragement on her blog. Her faith in God is amazing! Her post:"Why I need God" was such a encouragement to me.
    Please pass this on to your friends and family.
    I'll be praying for you and your family
    God bless