It might be hard for many to appreciate just how big this gift was for us.
Our youngest son, dancing in this year’s Advent program — a program that has been launching our Advent season in a most beautiful way for the past 12 years or so. Some of those years, our children have been background participants, and other years they’ve had larger roles.
We have just one year left after this one before our youngest moves on to middle school, and when that day comes, these programs likely will be part of our memory only. I will miss them, and miss my young kids looking out into the crowd, searching for their mama as my guy did here.
The combination of knowing we’re nearing the end, mixed in with how hard a year it’s been with our teenagers, and the fact that a good friend of ours is the hardworking choreographer for these annual events, made it especially emotional this time around.
I didn’t cry. Well, maybe a tear sneaked out right at the end during the signature piece, which leaves most of us moms a happy mess (see link below).
But mostly I was beaming inside, because in a very real way, our son’s part in dancing in this event was a beautiful piercing of light into a dark, dark world; dark out there, but at times in these last months, dark inside our home, too. And by dark I mean that it’s been hard at times to find any kind of sustained surface peace. I find the deep-down peace to be fairly constant.
I do live with such joy most of the time, and it’s sincere, but we’ve been handed our fair share of trials, and right now, we seem to be moving through some of the most perplexing of them in terms of our children and their futures. It is not easy, even though God always provides just enough grace for us to move through it.
So given that, I can barely hold back how my heart leaps in moments such as the Nativity Advent Program; this year, through our son’s participation, and in the finding of little surprises like his Advent artwork in the hall near his classroom as I passed by on the way to the bathroom.
In about an hour, this same son will lead the prayer of petitions at the school Mass for the Feast Day of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary. He practiced last night and has his part down well. And then this coming weekend, our daughters will perform in the high school candlelight Christmas concert, another yearly event that I always anticipate with great eagerness. I know that by the end of it all, my heart is going to be aptly filled, and oh so ready to receive Christ.
What a blessed life, through it all, in glad praise of our good and faithful God!
Q4U: What has been your light in the darkness this week?