Christmas in a Box

One of Andrew's ornaments from Thailand

One of Andrew’s ornaments from Thailand


WHOSE idea was it to move right before Christmas?

I’ve asked myself this question at least a dozen times in the past few days. Who am I kidding? I’ve asked myself this question at least a dozen times today!

When we closed on our new-to-us home 20 days ago, Christmas still felt like a mirage. But as the hours (and more precisely, the days) have passed, I have grown more intense in my conviction that a move right before Christmas is akin to eating sushi from a pancake house. It’s not going to end well.

Here’s a bit of advice should you find yourself in a similar predicament. If you want the motivation to unpack quickly, simply disperse your carefully collected Christmas gifts over several unmarked boxes. It’ll feel like an Easter egg hunt, only less fun. I’ve spent the past few days ripping through boxes of dishes in search of toy trains.

Anyway. Here’s the thing. As I’ve been rushing around making beds, painting walls, and hanging photos, I’ve been thinking about the irony of wishing for a calm Christmas. On that first Christmas 2000 years ago, a young girl was relegated to the equivalent of a cave to give birth. Bethlehem was filled to the brim with visitors. A group of shepherds were yanked out of their humble routine by a mass of angels announcing the unthinkable. (Imagine THAT birthing story, crunchy mamas!)

I am sure that nothing about the first Christmas was carefully planned or perfectly executed from Mary’s perspective. Who could anticipate the Christ child swaddled in cloth? Who could imagine that He who held all things together would lay helpless in a manger?

And yet, everything was exactly as God intended. Christmas was the revelation of Christ in the midst of chaos.

And so it will be for me this year. Though my duties do not feel as sacred as those belonging to Mary, they are my assignments. And I will learn to treasure up all these things and ponder them in my heart.

And anyway, it would seem ironic and altogether unfitting to hope for a Christmas day in which I didn’t desperately need Christ, wouldn’t it?

Merry Christmas!


  1. Wishing you many special memories and blessings in your new home… starting with your first Christmas there! :)

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