Well the dreaded day has come, I’ve given in and I’m taking down the Christmas decorations. I would probably keep them up all year if it wouldn’t make the neighbors avoid me or cast side glances at me when I see them outside.
So, as I’ve worked to put away the Christmas mugs and tried to keep from getting tangled up in the tree lights, I’ve been spending a little time reflecting on the Christmas season. One evening, that stands out in my mind, was just a few nights before Christmas when at random we decided to jump in the car and head out for ice cream. Since we were out we decided to drive around town and look at the Christmas lights. We made our way through the park, hit a couple of streets around town and then toward a complex that we knew had some excellent lights. I was the fearless leader of this adventure and I didn’t have a clue where the lights display started, so I just picked a point of entry and said “turn here”.
As we were driving through, oohing and awing, we started to realize that we were struggling to make out what each design was supposed to be. A little bit of a lively discussion took place at one particular display because I thought Santa was standing outside of a house on the back of a reindeer putting a star on top of a tree. Others in the car felt like it looked like a house with a reindeer on the lawn attached to a sleigh and Santa standing on the rooftop. After a few minutes of uncontrolled laughter over our unique observations we moved on down the road trying to make out the other displays.
Finally, we reached the end and suddenly realized that we were headed out the entrance. We had just driven through the entire display…backwards!! Of course, we couldn’t control our laughter at this point and we had to turn around and go back through the right way. This time we could make out every single display without effort and everything made sense.
As I was thinking about that today I realized how life is so much like that. Very often the seasons we walk through look confusing or don’t at all turn out like we thought they would. We scratch our heads, we look at our circumstances from every different angle but we can’t figure it out to save our lives.
Sometimes we find ourselves in these seasons because of choices we made (like going in the lights display the wrong way) or sometimes it’s just the way things are supposed to be. We might not get it right in the middle of the mess, and honestly, we might not even get it this side of heaven. But I like to imagine that someday when I reach the finish line I’m going to look back over my shoulder and have a good laugh, finally seeing clearly some of the things I don’t currently understand.
Remembering that night brought a little beauty to my day and a smile to my face. What brought beauty to your day today?
Well – I guess I’ll finish tucking away the Christmas décor. If you don’t hear from me tomorrow send help – I may be tangled up in lights and tinsel!