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Awe & Anticipation

I remember being little and waiting for Christmas with sheer wonder and excitement. What awesome presents would I find under the tree? Would I get the Twinn doll/Gameboy Advance/iPod that I was so hoping for?

Christmas morning was legendary for me, especially as a child. My brother and I would wake up hours before dawn and pass the time away until 7 - the designated hour that we could wake our parents. Then we’d tear down the stairs and make a beeline for the tree.

As I got older, some of the magic of Christmas began to wane. Between jobs that required working on Christmas Eve/Day to complicated family dynamics, and a general awareness that bad stuff still happens even though it’s Christmas, I outgrew the some of the joy and delight of the season.

Now as a full-fledged adult, wife, and mother, every year inevitably turns into some personal endeavor to grab hold of the magic once more. To experience the transcendence from a powerful Advent service at my church. To feel that happy flutter when the Christmas tree and lights come out. To be surprised by finding that perfect gift under the tree on Christmas morning.

I’ve come to realize that growing older doesn’t mean that you have to relinquish the awe and anticipation of the Christmas season - or whatever other season you celebrate. Maybe you have to try a little harder to find the glimmer of delight under the weight of everyday obligations. Maybe you need to invest a little more into giving than receiving. Maybe you need to make the connection you’d otherwise neglect.

With the generosity and wonder of Christmas followed closely by the resolute determination of New Year’s, this season is the perfect time to grab hold of a new perspective. Sit a minute in the quiet glow of the Christmas lights and listen to your favorite carols. Journal about your year and what you might like to do next year. Enjoy a mug of coffee or cocoa with your mom or sister and reminisce about Christmases past.

Carry the spirit of awe and anticipation with you into the next year, as well. Maybe you’re looking forward to a graduation or birth of a new baby. Revel in the excitement of the unknown. Let the delicious flavor of adventure and anticipation wash over you. Giggle a little if you feel like it.

Enjoy yourselves, Friends! And have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

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