Tuesday, December 25, 2018

No Matter Where You Are


No Matter Where You Are

The first time I boarded a plane my Father looked me straight in the eye and told me, "If you need me, all you have to do is call.  I'll come and get you.  No matter where you are".  This vow - and it was a vow, I can tell you - was even more significant because it was coming from a man utterly terrified of flying.  Having served on an aircraft carrier during the Second World War, he had witnessed far too many pilots fail in their attempts to land squarely on the deck, and that spoiled his faith in air travel for the rest of his life.  It was another testament to his great love for his daughter that I never once doubted his sincerity.  If I was in trouble, if I needed him, I knew beyond question he would surmount anything to reach me.

Over the past year I have thought a lot about the comfort afforded me by Daddy's promise.  As my heart broke night after night thinking of the children separated from their parents at our southern borders - in cells and, God help us, in cages - at the hand of our own government, my mind would inevitably return to those words of my father's.  I know what a gift it is to have security in childhood.  I can only imagine the damage done when it is so cruelly taken away.  It is an awful feeling to know that something so despicable is being done by your country, essentially in your name, and you are powerless to stop it.

This horror was but one of many in this unique year.  Sometimes it was overwhelming. I have seen and heard things that were unthinkable a decade ago.  I have lost respect and trust in people and institutions that once seemed unassailable and true.  I have heard truth denied and lies applauded.  I have begun the process of raking up the ashes of what has burned away, and using them to fashion a shelter that can withstand a harsh wind.  I have learned the value of listening to the murmurs and whispers of my soul and have discovered the need, the vital need, of trusting the still, small voice of my heart rather than the tinkling brass and sounding cymbals of those who have placed their faith in the arrogance of certainty.

Writer Anne Lamott tell us that "these are holy days".  At first glance this statement seems at the very least contradictory to what we read in the papers and see on the news, but I think I know what she means.  We have only to look at Christ to see what is truly holy and we need that holiness today more than ever before.  The warmth of friendship, the balm of forgiveness, the covenant of acceptance.  Tolerance, humility, compassion, loving kindness.  These all may seem small in the face of so much ugliness we cannot control, but a little light shines brightest when there's darkness all around.   In this age when so many claim to speak for God, these holy qualities from Christ's life and words are more valuable than gold, and they are what I cling to.  They stand in direct contrast to the hatred, pride, indifference and greed of our present day.  In these holy days we are called to build bridges, not to hide behind walls.

Tonight as we celebrate the birth of Christ I am reminded that, much like my Dad, He has promised to "be with us always, even to the end of the world".  The past couple of years have often felt like the end of a world I thought I knew.  Maybe it's felt like that for you as well.  If so, it is my prayer and hope that all of us can sift through the wreckage to find the truth in this promise and know that when we need Him, no matter where we are, He will come and get us.

A very Happy and Hopeful Christmas to All.

xx


16 comments:

  1. And a wonderful and hope filled Christmas to you and yours.

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  2. Dear Pamela. Thank you for this uplifting post on Christmas morning. We too over here are going through a period which is unsettling and seems to be nothing but falling out and saying bitter things to one another. How I would love a period where love and understanding broke through.
    I wish you all a much happier New Year. Love to you and your family both two and four legged.

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  3. Beautifully written. May you have a wonderful day full of family and friends.

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  4. Amen...Thank you for your beautiful words.

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  5. Merry Christmas, Pamela. Thank you for being a light in the dark. Wishing the peace and joy of the season to you, the Songwriter, Apple and Andrew.

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  6. Thank you for your wonderful posts. I feel the same way as you. This year has been a very difficult one for me and I find it difficult to see greed and indifference. It seems that very few care about their fellow men. Posts like yours give me hope. You speak from the heart and you're not afraid of the truth. The world needs more people like you... a grateful heart, a brave warrior filled with grace. Never stop speaking the truth. I am wishing you and your loved ones Hope, Peace, Love and Grace on this Christmas morning!

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  7. May our voices be heard in the year to come. We can only hope....

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  8. Thank you for voicing the cries of my soul. Yes, the horror. My family and others wonderful why I pay close attention to what is happening to our nation--a great nation that has always been planted in compassion and has embraced the most needy. I cling to Christ's message of Resurrection and Reconciliation. The Phoenix is rising from the ashes. Light does shine in the darkest hour giving hope to those of us who mourn. Thank you for your fearless voice. Always. Mary

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  9. Amen. Hasn't the lesson of walls be learned yet? They not only keep one out, they lock others in. They will not stand unscathed. They demand destruction. Denise

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  10. ". . . but a little light shines brightest when there's darkness all around . . .." Thank you for this lovely post.

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  11. Thank you so very much for your good words. They are needed and I am so happy to read them. Please more pictures of your new dog and words about him. Blessings to you in the new year. Liz

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  12. you always touch my heart. always. all through the year.
    and my Christmas traditional reading of Edward Speaks at Midnight gives me comfort too.
    blessings to you dear Pamela. thank you for keeping your light shining! xo

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  13. Thank you for this, what may be your most beautiful post (and that is saying quite a lot). May God richly bless you, the Songwriter, Apple, and Andrew in 2019, dear lady. My internet access has been very slim and so I've not commented this past year. However, I always check in; each and every one of your posts has been a treasure. I certainly can't improve a whit upon what you have written, but thank you so much for saying it. Stephanie Jo in Northern California

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  14. I'm so glad to see you now have Andrew along with Apple to keep you company!!
    I have been away too long from reading blogs. Here's to a Happy New Year, Pamela.❤

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I love to read your comments! Each and every one! Though I'm always reading your comments, I may not respond in the comment section. If you want to write me directly, you may do so at pamela@pamelaterry.net. Thank you for reading!