Dearest BBFFs (Blessed Blog Friends Forever), I do apologize for my brief hiatus of the past few weeks here in Blogworld, but I’ve been blogged down (er, I mean bogged down) tending to a wrecked knee – a torn meniscus, the Ortho insists. Surgery will commence in January.
Since this is my “good” knee (the other went through three reconstructive surgeries about 15 years ago after a skiing accident in the Canadian Rockies and hasn’t ever quite been the same), I suppose I’m fresh out. Of good knees, I mean. At least for the next few months. But I have high hopes that I’ll return to the tennis courts (my sanity therapy) in the spring – okay, maybe that’s a bit optimistic. In the summer, then – and not have to keep hobbling around in a clunky knee brace holding onto furniture.
I’m doing my durndest not to get depressed about this whole thing – and right before the holidays too – but it’s hard when your 89-year-old mama beats you in a foot race. Hey, if you count her cane, she had three legs to my two. And she got a wicked head start.
But I’m determined to not let a little pain and inconvenience ruin my joyful celebration of my Savior’s birth.
I think of Simeon (Luke 2: 21-35), the elderly gentleman whose pending death was postponed until he could witness with his own eyes the promised Messiah. Simeon didn’t let a bum knee – or any other achy-breaky joint or potentially debilitating situation – keep him from limping toward the Temple when he received the elbow jab by the Holy Spirit that Mary and Joseph had brought Baby Jesus “to be consecrated to the Lord” (Luke 2: 23, NIV).
Now most scholars believe Simeon was an old man, very likely plagued with common infirmities of old age – arthritis, failing eyesight, hard of hearing, poor mobility. Eeeek – I just described me.
But he wouldn’t let his difficult circumstances stop him.
Nope, Simeon would have transported himself to the Temple draped unceremoniously across a bumpy, boney donkey if he’d had to. He would’ve dragged himself inside using any means possible. Because the long-awaited King of Kings had finally arrived! The hope of the world! The Savior of all mankind! No amount of bodily discomfort or mere unfortunate circumstances could make a dent in Simeon’s joy:
“With my own eyes I’ve seen your salvation; it’s now out in the open to everyone to see!” (Luke 2:30-31, MSG). Despite the dimness of his own ebbing vision, he saw hope blazing in the Christ-child.
Embracing Jesus can do that to a person.
So how about you, dear BBFF? Will you join me in overlooking your own (possibly unpleasant) circumstances to enjoy the joy this Christmas season? Yours may not be a physical ailment – it might be an invisible festering emotional or spiritual wound, or even a ripped relationship. Notice I intentionally didn’t use the word “overcoming” our circumstances, because they often don’t just magically go away.
Maybe – there’s always hope for instant healing. Our God is certainly able. But realistically … probably not. Healing is usually a process. A long, hard, messy process.
Still, Papa God is waiting to bless our mess.
You and I CAN rise above our circumstances, like Simeon, and keep our focus on the tiny Messiah-in-a manger instead of on the cow patties squishing up between our toes. He’s the One, after all, who makes poppies from poopies.
I’d love to hear from you so I can pray for you as I hope you’ll pray for me this Christ-mas season.
We can do this, my friend. Together.