Christmas always brings back memories.
When it gets warm and the rain begins to fall, there is an inner alarm that tells my brain to bake Christmas cookies. For my childhood was spent in Zambia, where December was rainy season. Christmas was simple and I remember the parties my parents would throw in the villages. They bought bread rolls and we would slice them and spread them with butter and jam. This was a treat for the villagers. I think of these days and tears well my eyes.
When the sound of carols and songs such as "I'll be Home for Christmas" reach my hears, I cry. For I have spent very few Christmases home; at least home in the sense of being at my parent's house. From childhood, home was always somewhere that I was not.
As my children grow older and the magic of Christmas leaves their eyes, I think back on the excitement this holiday season used to bring. A tear escapes my eye.
Last week, standing at the checkout buying ingredients for my Christmas baking, I noticed an elderly man in front on me. He kindly helped me unload my cart, politely asking me of my day. Then he spoke pleasantly to the cashier, meticulously paid, put his change in his wallet and slid his wallet into his back pocket. There was nothing special about him except that he was elderly and he reminded me of my father. And, I began to cry.
Christmas makes me cry. They are not tears of sorrow, nor are they tears of happiness. I just cry. And I am not sure why except, Christmas floods my heart with memories. Memories of home, the past, and family.
The tears are always from something I do not have. I wonder if Mary shed a tear because she missed her mother when it came time to give birth. Did she miss her family and her bed at home? Did she cry because her new husband did not always live up to her expectations. Would her father have handled things differently? I think she might have cried. And...I think it did not make her any less the mother God chose for His Son.