He holds onto us....

 I dislike packing very much. I sit on suitcases and pray them closed and under the allowed weight. I do this for a living. My family knows when they see me bent over an overstuffed bag they are not to offer their "I - don't- think- that- will - close,- mom" opinion. Mom knows it will close. Bags need to be coaxed closed, duffel bags always have an extra inch of air to spare for a last minute Lego set or pair of shoes. Any family that lives overseas knows the joys of carting items from homeschool books, winter gear of all sizes (the the kids will grow this year), birthday presents (must be prepared!)  cooking spices, baking supplies, and in the early years, aluminum foil, too. 

We pass through three airports today and will conclude our 25 hour trip back to our Asia home in a few hours. My husband and oldest son are on a different flight, the rest of us catch a midnight flight with a couple layovers. I wonder where all of these passengers are going today? Some stroll through shops pretending they don't have an eight hour layover and that they would choose to peruse duty free stores even in their free time. Others madly dash from one gate to another, asking to cut in line because their flight just issued a final call for boarding. I feel their pain and I'm thankful it's not us today. The bored sit and people watch and today I join them. Security lines, immigration, few questions are asked today and I remember enough language to get us through.

This month is over and a new year begins. 

Advent began with so many uncertainties creating new ways for my soul to be anxious.  All the ways I normally try to be purposeful during Advent didn't really happen. With the new year in full center I realize that it too has slipped in fairly unnoticed,too.

Sometime dreaming is a luxury. 

These days my prayers today run something like, Lord keep us safe, healthy, and close to You. Maybe more akin to the Lord's Prayer, but I often think I must add more. Greater eloquence, more words, deeper thoughts. But there isn't energy for the long prayers, for it has all become a bit more like breathing. Breathing the name of Jesus and in doing so hoping that He hears the faintest whispers and knows the deepest desires of the heart.

This journey of life ebbs and flows, its rhythm can be off and the cadence dissonant and sometimes you feel you are doing everything you can to hold on. Sometimes you can't hold on and you hope that others will help you hold on. And then you realize that it's He that holds on to you and however cliche that sounds, it's true. 

He holds on to us. 

My deep thinking son says over New Year's dinner that he's most thankful for God's presence. That in all the uncertainty, one thing is certain and it is that God never leaves. Even when He's hard to find, He never leaves. My heart is so grateful to hear this from my son as he's been quiet through all of this. He isn't one to gush with words so when he talks, everyone stops to listen. 

His affirmation of this truth is a gift to my soul and assures me that the lessons He is writing on my heart He writes on my kids' hearts, too. 

Whatever this year holds, we can know that He is with us and that is enough.

    A promise and reminder   


  1. Praying for you and your family. You are in our thoughts.

  2. Praying for you especially when we were in Thailand. I sympathize with you about packing everything, I'm not as prepared as you are with the gift. I will write soon to share about our break.


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