I was listening to Amy Grant’s “I need a silent night” and when she says “I wonder what it was like in Bethlehem Town…peace on earth good will towards men” I thought um..BULL-ony!! I remember earlier today I screamed and pulled my kids along the busy Bass Pro Shop with my “bass pass” ticket that promised no wait and yet here was the crazy wait. When I saw a dad scream at his son and tell his wife “I can’t stand him” and wondered if I looked that ugly as I spoke equally harsh to my own children. The traffic there and back was nuts. I remembered the words to Amy Grant’s song and wondered how would it have been if I were fighting the crowds, the traffic, the grumpy people like myself, feeling like I may burst under all this pressure and were 9 months pregnant? I don’t think I would be very nice to poor Joseph and I don’t think Joseph, feeling the pressure of providing a safe place for Mary to deliver the SON OF GOD would have good will towards all the inn keepers that had no room for them nor cared about the important burden he was carrying! It makes my tradition of a picture with santa seem pretty darn petty. When I was pregnant, I was sensitive to smells. Mary was delivering, surrounded by animals and animal poop. Then she had to put him in the place you put hay for the dirty animals to eat? No Purell? I didn’t let people near my babies until they washed their hands and I most certainly wouldn’t stick one of them in a pile of hay. There was no silent night until everyone was asleep. This is the first time ever I have felt a connection to Mary on Christmas. The smells, the pushiness, the pressure of fulfilling the perfect visions we have of Christmas. I’m sure Mary was envisioning more of a delivery with angelic hosts assisting and I’m sure when she saw animals and smelled smells she was probably not too thrilled. Poor Joseph. Sometimes I feel sad for the forgotten terrors of the dads as they go through their wives’ labor. They really don’t matter while we are giving birth and are all alone as they face the insanity that takes over their wives. It must have been awful, because we don’t hear much about him after that night. So, for the first Christmas ever I feel like I can finally relate to Mary and not beat myself up for being a Martha, so overcome with the pressure that we don’t experience the miracle until all is done and the night is silent. So please forgive me as I plow through this Christmas to be able to experience the Silent Night when everyone is asleep and I can finally celebrate my sweet Jesus and ask forgiveness for all the pushy, sharp things I have said and for not representing His love very well. Maybe I should ask forgiveness in advance for Easter.
So, a new game was invented at the dinner table tonight. “What does this food taste like?” Joey started the game up in high spirits with “My dinner tastes like rope. Does your dinner taste like rope?” Wesley countered with “No. Mine doesn’t. Did she put rope in this? I’m not sure what it taste like, but I am not tasting rope. Do you see rope in it?” It was country fried steak. It is not one of my strong suits. It didn’t taste like restaurant quality….but rope? really? With Christmas dinner right around the corner I must say my confidence is at an all time low.