Wednesday, December 10, 2014

bubbling over

my heart is just bubbling over this season. maybe it's making up for all the seasons lost in darkness. i don't know. i can't stop decorating...adding lights to EVERYTHING. my heart is just so GRATEFUL for who He is and for the JOY He is filling me with.

{because sometimes people need a "happy thursday" 
instead of a "happy friday" plate of cookies, right??}

{rebekah's fan club at her guitar concert}

 {she got to introduce the concert. thanks to the amazing worship at our church, this is year 2 of MANY for her to play the guitar - she loves it!}
i am struck, though, by my heart at times. i finally have the joy and energy to give and do for my kids this Christmas season. this is what makes me feel be creative with them and find ways to celebrate Jesus' birth in our actions...and with fun, silly traditions.
this past friday, on a whim, i yanked them ALL out of school early (totally surprised them!)...had fun snacks and drinks for them in the car...and drove 30 minutes to a free concert in a mall by Pentatonix.
we only had to wait 30 minutes in a crowd of HUNDREDS (thousands?? i'm bad at estimating) until they went on. my kids truly are amazing at entertaining themselves. joshua had them playing some hand game...

 then we walked out to see the ice rink...that was going to have nancy kerrigan skating!

this was all i prayed for the past few have the joy and energy to put into them like i can and am this year. but when Jesus looks at it, does He see us celebrating Him...or ourselves? i truly did that whole concert excursion 100%  out of love for my kids (losing part of my quiet time that afternoon...and being in a crowd of people...and driving home in rush hour in the rain...there were plenty other ways i would have preferred to spend my friday afternoon)...but i feel like it can so quickly go from a sincere and genuine a selfish, empty place. and i'm so over empty places.
i'm bubbling over with an awareness. an awareness that we have WAY more than we need and it could be taken away at any second. i want to just give and give and give until there is nothing left to give. some days it looks like this:
handing out candy to the cranky people waiting in line to mail their packages in the middle of december. we've lived days where we didn't have enough money to buy things like candy to hand out to strangers. but now we can...and we will. no matter what our bank account looks like, we will love others with all we have.

last year, all these lights everywhere (and i mean EVERYWHERE!) would have made my stomach all felt so forced and TOO MUCH. if that's where you are, it's ok. Jesus isn't IN the lights (i know you know that ;)) don't force it. He is with you in the darkness, too. trust me. but this year, i'm tempted to feel silly for ALL the lights...or guilty for the ability to have and light them all. but i won't. i won't feel silly OR guilty, because it is just a sign of joy bubbling over. and i can't and won't stop it.
He is doing mighty things around here. i got this letter on my pillow the other night. there is healing happening and we are praising God!! we have a long way to go (all of us), but He is working and we are thankful!
 how do you fight this tension?? to celebrate Jesus and not ourselves?


Mandy said...

courtney. i have no words. i love this so, SO much.

Megan said...

You sound so happy - that is WONDERFUL! I'm sure God is enjoying watching you delight in the season and your family and recognize what the season is all about. And Lincoln's note is just precious. Merry Christmas season to all of you!

Alden and Dorian said...

Your bubbling over is spilling on to all those around you~ ENJOY this season of JOY in your heart dear Courtney! Let HIM shine! Rejoicing!780

Tisha said...

This post reminds me there is a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to weep and a time to laugh....for everything there is a season. It's great to ENJOY the one you are in! Love Lincoln's note to you. So sweet!

Ali said...

I am so glad you are bubbling over. He has heard your cries!