Today I walked into the livingroom of the lodge at the residential ministry for at-risk youth where my husband and I live and work and saw that they had their Christmas tree cut, lit, and decorated. A glance around the room and I spotted other decorations, including the nativity scene and the garland near the hearth with the names of Jesus. I smiled and remembered that the ribboned names had been a project I helped them with last year.
The Christmas season is here!
I realize it's not an easy time of year for all. Even when we do enjoy it most of the time, some days are just tough, or we know families or individuals who are struggling.
I thought I'd share a poem that has been an encouragement to me when events in life have become 'too much':
"Child of My love, lean hard,
And let Me feel the pressure of thy care;
I know thy burden, child. I shaped it;
Poised it in Mine Own hand; made no proportion
In its weight to thine unaided strength
For even as I laid it on, I said,
'I shall be near, and while she leans on Me,
This burden shall be Mine, not hers;
So shall I keep My child within the circling arms
Of My Own love.' Here lay it down, nor fear
To impose it on a shoulder which upholds
The government of worlds. Yet closer come;
Thou art not near enough. I would embrace they care;
So I might feel My child reposing on My breast.
Thou lovest Me? I knew it. Doubt not then;
But loving Me, lean hard."
From Streams In the Desert, September 12th devotion
May you know God's closeness in deep, joyous, and comforting ways this season. Especially know that Jesus who came as a babe, Immanuel, God with Us, is the one who said, "Come . . . take my yoke . . . learn from me for I am gentle and lowly at heart, and you will find rest for your souls." (Matthew 11:28-30).