December: Emmanuel has come to us!

December: Emmanuel has come to us!

I’m not one for cloying inspirational quotes, bumper sticker theology or cheesy clichés about how to get through each day or each failure.

But during a recent hard time my husband adjured me to smile five times a day — and somehow the smiling helped me through.

I’ve also been trying to keep in mind the gifts in life I’m grateful for: two arms, two legs, good friends, fine family, great books, my writing and a ragtag community across the church that cares about our planet and for people who live with less.

I could go on about what sustains me, but I’d rather just give thanks. Or, as Christmas would have me express it, rejoice.

“Joy is medicine,” writes Anne Lamott in her essay “’joice to the World”; adding that joy has never been needed more than it is now by our hurting world.

Lamott, a chronic worrier, is reminded by her minister that both Jesus and Paul often said: “Don’t worry! Don’t be so anxious. In dark times give off light. Care for the least of God’s people.”

Better than any bumper sticker, let’s live it: Emmanuel has come to us. Rejoice! Rejoice!

Marjorie Lewis-Jones

Joyful Christmas wishes from the Uniting Creative team (from left) — Esther, Stephen, Amanda, Marije, Chloe, Lyndal (seated) and Marjorie. Adrian is not pictured but sends you season’s greetings too.

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