You know how most families have holiday traditions like making special ornaments or Christmas caroling? Well, us Wilsons do things differently. After my dad expounds on the true meaning of Christmas, I can always count on my big brother to adorn me with a bunch of horribly-wrapped gag gifts. He couldn’t spend Christmas with us in person this year, but he made sure to make his presence known; pun intended.
The kids were nearly done unwrapping their gifts while I struggled to open my 6×6 inch box made with layers of mismatched wrapping paper, toilet tissue, saran wrap, masking tape, and what seemed like miles of burlap yarn. In my agitation with the box, I uttered, “Why am I even doing this? It’s not like it’s an engagement ring. This is the story of my life.” After about 10 more minutes of eye rolls and deep sighs, I finally reached the end of the burlap yarn, and was overcome with emotion. All I could do was cry as I opened a black velvet box with the most beautiful pair of diamond earrings inside.
Why the tears? Because I was completely humbled by my brother’s demonstration of love. He took to heart what I said in jest. I jokingly requested my mom’s diamond studs when he asked what I wanted for Christmas. I was surprised to receive a pair of my own. I was also humbled by the fact that he knew how I would act and bought me diamonds anyway. In fact, his knowledge of me is probably why he wrapped the gift so horribly. He was going for the dramatic effect…and boy did he get it!
It’s no secret that life is layered with hardships and a mile-long list of uncertainties. But underneath those layers are the hopes and dreams we pass off as wishful thinking. Just know that God takes to heart what we say in jest. So if your heart’s desires are God-inspired, work through the layers. You will certainly be rewarded at the end.
Trust me when I say I am believing this for myself. It’s been one thing after another, and I’ve probably cried more this school year than in the past couple of years. For one, my children are getting older, which means their world of understanding is growing. It’s been rough trying to answer their questions about the world they once thought was perfect, and watch them hurt over things I cannot fix. This is while mourning so many losses at work and dealing with personal misfortunes that weighed heavily on…everything. But I insist on believing that my Christmas experience really is the story of my life. If I endure, the beauty beneath these layers will be worth it at the end.
There’s a beautiful story at the end of what you’re going through. Find comfort in the fact that the people who know and love you are not holding your complaints against you. They know you are overwhelmed. God does too. He also knows you will overcome. In fact, He built your trials with your deliverance in mind. So, be encouraged, stay prayerful, and work through the layers. Trust and believe that your victory on the other side will yield the dramatic effect God is going for! My children and I will be okay. I am believing the same for you.
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