It’s November 1st and, like many others, I am already anxious for the holidays.
I’m anxious for Thanksgiving and seeing my family and eating by far my favorite meal of the year.
I’m anxious for Christmas.
Do not be fooled. It’s not because of the gifts.
When you get to be an adult, you get adult things. Like a new battery for your car. I’d be lucky if I got a Starbucks gift card. Maybe a vinyl record. But that’s pushing it.
I’m anxious merely because I love christmastime. Baking, making candy, dressing the tree, stressing over and wrapping presents for others, layering up, listening to christmas tunes (I recommend A Very She & Him Christmas), and drinking even more tea than you did in the fall is what I live for. There’s just something about the contrast between the chill in the air outside and the warmth that you experience from people (and 21st century heating) inside that is so satisfying. I love how in the last month or so of the year people can finally get to come together and do one of the most boisterous things: celebrate.
Because this year will be the first year I won’t be around all the people that I love so dearly, I’ve become blue. Being around the friends and family that make life worthwhile is what makes the holidays so gratifying.
During the month of October I struggled with being so far away from where things were going on with people I knew. I longed to go to pumpkin patches, get togethers, corn mazes, lunches, and movie nights. I wanted to get coffee with people other than myself! I would get antsy and restless at night, wishing I could be getting up the next morning to go to church back home.
There was nothing that I could do about it. The only thing that kept me away was 231 miles. And that was frustrating.
Sometimes it can feel like I’m missing out on everything. But the reality of it is, I’m not missing out on anything. I’m in Portland now. I’m pursuing my dreams. No amount of homesickness is going to keep me from enjoying the now. “You are on an adventure…” as my great friend Jewel would say. “…People should feel like they are missing out on things there.”
This holiday will not be blue. I will embrace the warm colors of fall and only hope that they will last within my soul through winter.
Just because I’m in this “wilderness” does not mean I am alone. It is in the wilderness that the only person we find ourselves being with is the Lord. Where our anchors are tested and where our impulses to go to the him when we are weak and when we need direction or a smidgen of hope are strengthened.
I’m finally beginning to come to terms that this is where I belong. These “growing pains” are inevitable. Shifting my focus away from things I’m missing out on changes not only my perspective, but attitude. Reminding myself why I started has become a daily task. I’m sure it’s safe to say that you can’t reach a goal if you dont know how far you’re going to have to go and how much effort it’s going to require.
I’m glad my dreams have always been big enough to scare me. God will always be on our sides, cheering us on until we reach the finish line.
“Do not let your heart be troubled” – John 14:1
“Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire”