My siblings and our families gather once a year at my house for a Christmas Eve party. I love the holiday season and almost everything about it; buying and wrapping presents, the music, lights, the feeling of good-will in the air, decorations, the excuse to eat rich food, even the snow (for a few weeks!). It is a deeply spiritual time for me. I always thought that my love of the season would naturally spill over into having a big party on my favorite day of the year, Christmas Eve, but that has not been my experience, and yet I didn’t admit this, even to myself, until a few days ago.
We have a tiny house, and as much as I would like to be relaxed about squeezing 20 people in for food and games, the thought always makes me tense. I am also really particular about the food. I like unusual and festive gourmet selections and lots of variety, served on platters and plates with gold trim; over-the-top perfection was what I was aiming for, but my wanting everything to be “perfect” was also exhausting. I was taking on the role of party planner/caterer, not a family member celebrating.
My brother Bob hosted an 84th birthday party for my mother on Saturday. I noticed how relaxed and comfortable he and his fiance seemed. They served salad, rolls and meatballs in sauce. The food was simple and good. My sister Jayne brought the dessert. It was nice. It felt in pretty big contrast to the way I orchestrated our Christmas. I told my brother how much I appreciated his approach and he said that he loved doing it, and an idea hit me; I wonder if he would want to host the Christmas Eve party? I asked, and he did. It turns out that Kim (his fiance) had always wanted this too.
As Jack and I were driving home from the party he said, “You are not going to believe this, but I had been thinking about asking Bob and Kim if they would host the Christmas Eve party. I almost called him up a few weeks ago, but I felt that you needed to be the one to “hand it over”. I cannot tell you how happy I am about this, and I didn’t need to say a thing!”
I am happy about it too. I am ready for new experiences, new ways of doing things, seeing things….very fitting for the upcoming season I think!
Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth, shall you not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert. Isaiah 43:19