My first nativity set was given to me by my Sweetie (Honey Pie’s mom) back in 1995. I’m a sappy sentimental type, so you can imagine how I felt when I loaded my arms up with too much, and something fell out and broke. I was upset when I heard the sound, but not as upset as when I saw what it was. There on the floor, lay the broken shards of baby Jesus. Not a sheep, or camel, or shepherd. Nope, I broke the most important piece of the whole set.
Few and far between are the occasions when full-blown Hissy Fit pitching is called for, and hum-boy-howdy, this was one of them. Living here in the Midwest, where the reserved family we are part of has NO experience with Hissy Fit pitching, my children have only experienced two. Needless to say feet came running from all over the house when this one commenced. “NO NO NO, agggggrrrrrhhhaaaaa!” This is accompanied by frantic river dance footwork, followed by more howling and other-worldly groanings.
Eyes wide, hearts racing, they piled into the room to see the disaster. To their wondering eyes, nothing is wrong. No blood. No threat. No danger. Just Mama, arms loaded, doing this crazy-person dance.
They can only see me. They can’t see little baby Jesus, in pieces, on the floor.
Sad to say, this is not the first time I have done this. Not the first time that He’s been pushed out because I was in a hurry, or overloaded by my own choices. Not the first time I’ve been thrown into full-blown panic mode because He was missing from my priorities, my choices. No, this isn’t the first time Jesus has been left on the floor while I clutched to my heart other things. Truth is, most of the pain I’ve had in my life, I caused myself.
How often does this happen in life? We don’t keep Jesus where He should be, close enough that He doesn’t get pushed out by other things.
How often do we see someone in the throes of crises, and we can’t figure out why they are acting the way they are.
We can’t see the broken relationship on the floor of their heart. We can’t see they are reaping pain because they didn’t keep their priorities straight.
All we can see is the frantic flailing. The panic. The pain.
Because that is exactly what happens to us. Every time. Every time we pile our lives too full, and Jesus gets pushed out. Every time we don’t put him where He belongs.
First in my heart.
First in my schedule.
First in my finances.
First in my relationships.
Today, as I attempt to fix this – to put the pieces back together – I am reminded of several things.
If something is precious, don’t overload yourself with less precious things.
I need to salvage lost, broken relationships. No, they may never be the same. Dings, chips, cracks are going to tell the story of the drop. But fix what you can. I must forgive, and ask for forgiveness. A repaired relationship is better than a broken one.
He came, whole, to be broken. For me. So I could be mended too.
So off I go.
Maybe you have some gluing and praying of your own to attend to. May the broken Christ, wounded for your transgressions, help to make you whole.
Blessed repair season to you and yours.
(Info from SISTERS email@example.com Newsletter)