Monday, December 26, 2011

My Many Homes

So, I got to celebrate Christmas a few times.

On the twenty-third with my mother and sister. We opened presents from each other and had a really good time laughing, eating, cleaning the house and watching a movie.

Then, we celebrated on the 24th with my Nashville family. Man, I can't even begin to describe how wonderful the time was. I got to be with ALL my brothers - which rarely happens because everyone has different schedules and lives so far away. Well, we chatted it up and played with my nephew, Kyle, and talked to my brother, Kalen, and Peggy about their coming baby. Poor Peggy is due in just a few days - she was craving chocolate too. So funny and adorable. My youngest brother, Micah, was jamming on the guitar, and my oldest brother, Jayson was trying hard to keep Kyle out of trouble. Graham was gabbing his head off about planes and I stood in the midst of it all, totally in love with my brothers.

Then, I celebrated Christmas, on Christmas (finally) with my second Nashville family - the Watsons. Okay, well they are not really my family, but they might as well be. Supposedly, Becca, Jessy, Carlee and I were sisters at birth, but our parents decided to spilt us up between another couple because we were too awesome of children for them to hoard all for themselves. The original parents are undetermined because they deny the truth of the story. Well, that is at least the rumor that's going around. . . Anyhow, we had SO much fun. Wow. I honestly would never have chosen to spend the day any other way. The Watson's had some of their family in. Their Grammie, Papa, Grandma and cousins. So, it was good to see of my extended family.

Today, I celebrated with my St. Louis MO family. All the kids, cousins, Aunts and Uncles. It was a total riot and always is. I suggested compiling a legal document, declaring that none of the parents or teenagers would be liable in case of a child's injury during present-unwrapping time. But, that was sorta a fail. Seriously guys, we have 10 kids in the family all under 11. When it's time to unwrap presents, I tuck myself safely in a corner and I'm picking pieces of wrapping paper out of my hair for a few hours. . .

Guys, I'm not going to lie; God has really dished me a load of challenges in this life. There are a ton of things that I wish were different about my family. But, during times like this - namely Christmas Eve with my Nashville family - I wonder what I don't have. If things weren't the way they were, I very likely may not even have the privilege of knowing my precious brothers and being a part of my two nephews' life. I wouldn't know the joy of family reconciliation, if I had never known a broken family. I would not know the beauty of love-despite-the-circumstances, if I had never witnessed the circumstances.

I find that insanely ironic and beautiful. Given the chance, what would I change? What would be different? Nothing. Honestly, nothing. I love what I have too much. When you are right in the middle of a situation, sometimes it's hard to see God's timely planning and why He's doing what He's doing. But, lemme tell you, don't give up on God; He actually does know what He is doing - no matter how hopeless you feel and how annoyed you are at Him. Just wait.

I realized something this Christmas. If anything was to ever happen to me or my family, we would have a lot of homes. I have a lot of homes outside my home. I'm incredibly loved. I can't believe that, but it's true. I don't understand what is lovable about me, but for some reason, I could count dozens of people that would take me in in half a heartbeat.

Forgive me, Lord, for taking such a thing for granted. Many people in this world don't know what family is. I have family; immediate family, extended family.. . .adopted family. . .and the family of God.

But, pushing aside the earthly, there is one love and one home that trills me more than the rest - by far! I have a home outside of this home and out of this world. Heaven. There is someone who has promised to take me and has taken me; My Jesus. What a love, man. I thought this family was awesome, but - whoo - my heavenly daddy has put this earthly congregation to shame. word.

I was glad to be reminded of this on Christmas. We watched The Nativity on Christmas and it was so incredible how Christ (the Highest King of Kings) came as a baby to be humbly born, humbly rule and gloriously save the people of the world from their sins. For me and for you. To top that craziness, He has promised us a heavenly home.

Yeah. I have earthly insurance; I know that if anything happens to me, my family or my house, I will have people to care for me. But, if something happens to my body and I die, God has promised to house my soul (and eventually my glorified body) forever. What beauty!

Today, I'm thanking God for my many homes; earthly and heavenly. I'm thanking God for allowing my family and my life to be the way it is. For allowing me to witness the joys and pleasures I have. For bringing special companions into my life and - the greatest of all - for holding my hand the whole time.

All the time, God is good. God is good, all the time.

1 comment:

Carleeeeeee ;p said...

Awwwwhhh...Ash! This was a cute post. It made me happy to have you guys over on Christmas. :) Just think, if all that stuff with your family wouldn't have happened, I don't know if we would have been as close as we are now. We might not have even been BFF! That's crazy. I love you sis and I'm thankful for you and your post because it made me thankful for my family too. :P Love you!!