Wayde and I absolutely love being grandparents. Our hearts stop when Jordana and Johnathan reach out their little arms to us, when they cry out, “GiGi…Papa!” I’m constantly taking pictures. I want to record, to remember every moment. They grow up so fast. So, I got our pictures taken for Christmas; it was a beautiful morning. We had gotten up early to make sure we were ready in time, gathering some last-minute items to hopefully hold the babies’ attention so we could obtain that perfect picture. As we pulled up to the tree farm, I could just make out the top of the camper through the trees. I was excited to see the scene that our photographer, Kristi Crawford, had created for this season’s shoot. She did not disappoint us. It gave the feeling of being on a cozy winter holiday, far away from all the complications of life.
When I look at the picture now, it makes me think of a Christmas journey. A journey 2000 years ago when shepherds left their fields to go find a baby whose birth was announced by angels. A journey where wise men traveled miles and miles in anticipation of finding a prophesied king, they had spent much of their lives researching.
I want to make that journey. I want to gather my family, my grandchildren and travel to Bethlehem. I want to take Jordana and Johnathan to the manger and introduce them to Jesus. But I don’t want to stop at the manger; I want to travel through Nazareth and through Galilee, following Jesus as He with heartfelt compassion fed the crowds of people because He didn’t want them to go home hungry. We would follow Jesus as He reached out and touched the lepers, the blind, the paralyzed, giving them their lives back. We would follow Him as He forgives women who compromised themselves and men who took advantage of their fellow countryman collecting exorbitant taxes from them. I would take them to the cross, so they could see Jesus who sacrificed His very own life to save theirs. I want them to see how He prayed for those who crammed thorns into His head and nails into His hands and feet; how he prayed for those that spit on Him and made fun of Him. I want to travel to the tomb and have Jordana and Johnathan witness the power of God that defeats death, the power that makes all things new.
More than anything I want Jordana and Johnathan to know who created them and loves them now and forever and who has wonderful plans and purposes for them. I want them to understand that Jesus knows them by name, that His thoughts toward them are more than the sand on the seashore; and He knows them so well that, at any given moment, He could tell them how many hairs are on their head. I want them to see that He dances and sings over them. He never sleeps or slumbers but is always watching over them. I want them to know that they can ravish His heart by just one glance they give in His direction. I want them to know that they can come to Him with anything, any care, any concern. He is always there to listen.
I want all my family and friends to make this journey too, to know this Savior. So, hey, come join us. We can squeeze you into the camp trailer. The more the merrier! Come with us, with Jordana and Johnathan as we go to adore Him. You will not regret it.
Let the dawning day bring me revelation of your tender, unfailing love. Give me light for my path and teach me, for I trust in you. Psalm 143:8 (TPT)
Just as I moved past them, I encountered him. I found the one I adore! I caught him and fastened myself to him, refusing to be feeble in my heart again. Song of Songs 3:4 (TPT)
Jesus was born in Bethlehem near Jerusalem during the reign of King Herod After Jesus’ birth a group of spiritual priests from the East came to Jerusalem and inquired of the people, “Where is the child who is born king of the Jewish people? We observed his star rising in the sky and we’ve come to bow before him in worship.” Matthew 2:1-2 (TPT)
Come and kneel before this Creator-God; come and bow before the mighty God, our majestic maker! For we are the lovers he cares for. Psalm 95:6-7 (TPT)