Glad Tidings of Comfort and More...

This holy season always seems to have two sides…the joyful celebration of our Savior’s Incarnation…and the darkness of the season. There are tragedies and hardships all around us…death, grief and sickness. We struggle to see the Light at times.

I thought about this when we lost beloved pets during Advent. And then the kids got sick just before Christmas. It has been something like this…

One child begs for another popsicle to ease her burning throat. She let the last one melt into a puddle. Meanwhile, the other child sits at the counter, coughing. He is staring at the stack of books he is supposed to be reading during this break from school. But he can't seem to turn the page. His eyes are glazed over. We call this Day Five of the Sickness.

My writing projects are on hold. Today I am not a Working Writer. I am Nurse, Nag and Comforter. "Please drink your water. You'll feel better tomorrow. Time to take your medicine. Go to bed now." The phrases are repeated over and over. I feel my mind turning into Sickness Soup--no longer creative or focused. I am not aware of anything but the demands of the moment.

These kind of days remind me that I (that's the Big I of ego) am not in charge. God is in charge of this world and my life. He holds the bigger vision. He knows what can be learned from these days set apart from the usual routine. He can truly heal all of us.

The roles of Nurse, Nag and Comforter are perfected in the example of the Holy Family, who set the model for our parenting roles.
Nurse--God promised to heal the nation of Israel--"I will restore you to health and heal your wounds." (Jer. 30:17) And then He sent a Savior and Redeemer for the entire world.
Nag—The angel came to Joseph again. Now he had a brand new family and he was hoping to return to their home and his regular work. But instead he was told to flee into a foreign land. He did as he was instructed. And Mary did not argue. She did as she was instructed. When Jesus grew into boyhood and was missing, His parents scolded Him and Jesus promised obedience.
Comforter--The Psalms are filled with references to the Comfort we will find in God's arms. And our Christmas carols announce Glad Tidings of Comfort and Joy. In spite of hardships, the image we have of the Holy Family is one of peace. They gave each other support.

I am glad to have the opportunity to experience these roles of Nurse, Nag and Comforter. We are perfected during times of stress.

Dear Lord, please be with me as I go about the roles you have ordained for me today. Help me to learn the lessons of the Days of Sickness.

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