Thursday, December 28, 2006

A New Year Begins

Merry Christmas to all! We have spent the past two weeks staying with family, enjoying a peaceful Christmas, getting adjusted to Steven's new job, and visiting with old friends. A big event tomorrow will cap it all off, and then Saturday we will move our belongings here (please pray for a peaceful move; I'm a little stressed about going back, packing, loading, cleaning, and unloading in 2 locations in one day!).

Then we will get to share a few weeks living in the neighborhood with many of Steven's family members, which will be a special treat. And it will also be a special retreat for me as we will not have continuous internet or TV (well, we don't have TV at home either, but I'm a bit addicted to HGTV and TLC here at my parents'!). So I won't be around much, but will hopefully still pop in and sometime soon post some of our Christmas pictures and videos.

We are filled with hope as we enter in to this new year. We are finally at the place we had so hoped for many years ago...with Steven finished with school, buying our first home, and our two beautiful daughters giving us new joys each day. This post on another blog described just how I feel in thinking back over the last 5.5 years. Five years ago we were on our belated honeymooon pilgrimage to Rome, also filled with hope (and somewhat naive) at what our life had in store. It would change drastically just after we came home as Steven started a new job in pro-life ministry and we found out Mary Clare was on the way.

On New Year's Eve looking out from that convent balcony where we stayed, in awe of the fireworks and the landscape of the Holy City, I could never have thought up what the next 5 years would bring. I remember talking to our friends on that trip, 3 other newlywed couples, about our futures. We are now all blessed with 3 children, though a few of our children wait for us in Heaven. It was a true gift for us to spend that first New Year's night in Rome, celebrating the Christmas season with the Universal Church, and receiving the blessing of our late Holy Father, Pope John Paul II the Great.

And here I am 5 years later filled with that same hope. It's a different hope, a less naive hope, but a hope that is better grounded in that it rests only in the One who gives life. The Lord has given and has taken away, but blessed be His name! I pray that that little Babe in Bethlehem will touch our hearts on a much deeper level this year. That his love would pierce all the dark areas where we need him most. That he would reveal himself to our family and friends who we most want to be a part of this life of grace.

In these last few minutes of the Feast of the Holy Innocents, little martyrs during the massacre of baby boys in Bethlehem, I think on the sufferings of humanity, on the trials that have faced our friends and family over the past months. But I also read the Psalm response today that sums it up so beautifully. May I trust in its words. Here is the entire reading:

Responsorial Psalm
Ps 124:2-3, 4-5, 7cd-8

R. (7) Our soul has been rescued like a bird from the fowler’s snare.
Had not the LORD been with us—
When men rose up against us,
then would they have swallowed us alive,
When their fury was inflamed against us.
R. Our soul has been rescued like a bird from the fowler’s snare.
Then would the waters have overwhelmed us;
The torrent would have swept over us;
over us then would have swept the raging waters.
R. Our soul has been rescued like a bird from the fowler’s snare.
Broken was the snare,
and we were freed.
Our help is in the name of the LORD,
who made heaven and earth.
R. Our soul has been rescued like a bird from the fowler's snare.

1 comment:

Los Hinckleys said...

Thanks, Blair, for the beautiful reflection on a trustful surrender to what God has for our lives. May God bless you in this time of transition.

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