(Not so interested in "bullets" at present.)
I am gazing at my Christmas tree. I'm having another of those "years of not letting go," in the Christmas department. I said to Beloved not too long ago, "I just love my tree this year." She answered, "You always love your tree." You know, I think she's right. I always love my tree. I think this is the result of not having one, ages 8 through 16 and 18 through 20. Ever since I was first married (age 21) I've had a tree, and it has delighted me beyond all rationality.
And, aside from the Christian meaning of Christmas-- which, for me, is Incarnation, the astounding notion that God does not leave us alone on these dark shores but shows up and lights a candle for us-- there is the pre-Christian, still applicable celebration of the lightening of the days after the darkest and longest night, which we celebrate with lights, and, darn it, I'm still celebrating. It's still dark and cold out there.
Still, there are things happening other than my holding on to my Douglas Fir.
* Petra finished her college applications. The angels wept tears of joy and relief. I'm pretty sure.
* Petra also completed her first college audition at Big City U, in the aftermath of a big snowstorm. We drove towards the storm last Tuesday night but arrived there before the snow fell. (Evidently, it fell throughout the night and cleared off before daybreak). She auditioned Wednesday, and felt good about it. It was a remarkable privilege to be there with her, and to remember accompanying Larry on auditions five (!) years ago.
* The leadership from my church participated in a presbytery-wide day of learning, as we have the past three years, and, as usual, came away energized and refreshed for our work together. And I once again said, God, you are so cool. You put me here. With these fantastic people.
That said, there are little issues here and there at work. I still feel an energy about my work. But I do believe the congregation has relaxed a bit. Maybe a bit too much. I'm starting to feel that some entropy has set in, and that makes it harder to move forward programatically. But I still leave every Sunday grateful for our worship together, and that's the key-- the cornerstone. All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well.
* Beloved and I had really lovely weekend together, in which nothing much happened except enjoying one another's company (and some good movies). But it was rich beyond description. Last night, after one of said movies, we huddled together on the floor under a blanket, in front of the fire, and talked about some hard things. (Stuff going on in my family.) Her love and kindness sustain me in ways I can't even fathom.
That's all for now. I'll try to be a better correspondent. Stay warm. Listen to this, and look at the scenes from my hometown (the outdoor shots, all from 'round these parts).