That Holiday Stretch
I touched down at Cebu this morning at 30 minutes past 12 noon. I was an hour delayed. The pile up of planes waiting for their chance to make the lift off on the run way numbered to about 4 in line. It took us an hour waiting. The trip wasn't so peaceful. Beside me were two tourists trying to figure out their map. A baby couldn't stop crying on the seat behind. But miraculously I managed to finish 1 chapter of a book. I was trying to silence my mind from thinking too much. The things I'll be missing out on. The things I'll be waiting on. The things that should be unfolding while I'm gone. There's so much that's happened and I don't really know where to place myself when 2012 begins. All I know is that I've made some decisions today and that letter I wrote yesterday has already been sent.
I pray for better opportunities of growth. I pray for some kind of fulfillment.
The whole day was spent in the hospital with Mom. She looked better than I expected. She could move around and talk already. We are hoping that she'll be discharged by Saturday so that we can spend Christmas with family. Now I've gone home to rest while my Dad stayed. The silence has begun and I'm trying to be fully present in this moment despite the void that I'm slowly beginning to feel. I read Ann Voskamp's blog again and she seems to be on the same journey as I.
I see the swelling silhouette of Mary there on the back of the donkey and the starkness of it strikes me, what it really means to be a womb. Mary’s distended. Her skin is pulled taut. Her belly swells round and her abdomen bulges and she is drawn to the outer rim of herself. Mary’s stretched.
To be a dwelling place of God, a womb for Christ, means to be extended, taken to one’s outer edges… stretched. To be a womb for God means there will be stretchmarks. This season of Advent may hurt. I may feel weary.
These days may not be easy. This is the how God may be growing within me. I reach out and touch Mary full with Child and I hurt in the knowing: A true Christmas, one that God indwells, will experience pangs and pain.
Kids will cry and siblings will bicker and relationships will grow taut and there will be days where nothing goes right and the season rather dissolves into one sloppy, muddy puddle. And this Christmas, I’ll be stretched thin and I will feel myself asked to love to the furthest edges of myself, asked to extend grace to the outermost reaches — because how else can I grow full and large and round with God?
To be a womb for Christ, I’ll feel my inner walls, my boundaries, stretch. Stretching the shape of a soul hurts.