• Dana L. Butler

Why I’ll Be Quiet A While {and my blessing for you in this Christmas season}

Tonight Stan and I put our Maia-girl to bed, then we cuddled with Isaac on the couch while we watched a Veggie Tales Christmas movie.  Stan read him the Christmas story before bed and I did my best to explain in 3-year-old terms what a manger was, and the inexplicable Love wrapped up in the tiny Baby who slept there.

I teared up trying to tell him why we celebrate Christmas.  I always tear up explaining the Gospel to my boy.

With both kids down for bed, we put up Christmas lights on our porch.  Then we took them all down and put them up again because I’d started them at the wrong end and they wouldn’t plug in.

My husband is so gracious, y’all.

We came inside and he soon went to bed, siting a scratchy throat and the need for extra rest.

And here I sit, on my couch.  9:37 pm, December 1st.

It’s our first year ever using colored lights instead of classy whites, and the colors beckon my thoughts back to childhood, when my mom would run a string of colored lights around the ceiling of my bedroom during Advent.   I’d lose myself in the glow every night until I couldn’t hold my eyes open anymore.

The tree is lit with color tonight too, and I stare into it a while, then open The Greatest Gift by Ann Voskamp.  What a treasure, this book.  Only one day in and I’m expectant to unwrap the Gift of Christ in this sweet season like I haven’t in years.

Or maybe ever.

To Notice More

Over the last couple of weeks, this desire has grown within me – I’m drawn to slow down.

I hosted and cooked and decorated my way through Thanksgiving week.  And while I loved every second of those days and every guest they ushered through our door, coming out of Thanksgiving and into Advent, I sense my heart needing to be still.

To be quiet.  To rest.

To notice Him more.

So as much as I’ll miss sharing my journey here and sensing y’all’s precious companionship in it, I think my journals will be the primary recipients of my heart for the next few weeks.  I’ll be back sometime around New Year’s.

And, of course, if I can get my act together and pull off a family Christmas card, I’ll post it here so you all can see the adorable-ness of our children at Christmastime.  (And it will likely include an honest blip about how crazy we were, wrangling kiddos, trying to snatch those one or two semi-“good” photos.)

I also have a guest post running at (in)Courage later this month, so I’ll pop in to point you in that direction when it’s time.

One more thing:

Y’all?  You bless my heart so deeply.  I mentioned recently how I’m so grateful for the grace with which you read my words.  I really am.  I’m blown away by you all.  Thank you for your hearts, and your openness to receive mine.

First  Advent reading from Ann Voskamp’s The Greatest Gift

My Blessing for You in this Season

May you live it slow, tuned in and awake to God With Us.

May you discern His whispers in your moments, and may your heart be tender, responsive to His pursuit.

May you be undone anew by the goodness of the Gospel, wrapped in this precious Baby King, who left throne and glory in extravagant pursuit of your heart.

Merry Christmas, my friends.

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