My mom sent me a picture of my Nana today. I burst into tears, right out in public. I just love her so much. So much.
When I was little, I was kind of scared of her. She was brisk and busy and didn't have a lot of time to sit and read with me, or take me for walks, or listen to me tell endless stories.
That was Grampie's job, because he couldn't do much else. (Alzheimer's disease can steal you from your mind but it can also slow you right down to a toddler's speed and make her world almost heaven.)
And Nana juggled the world around him, keeping it spinning and orderly and warm and tasty and impeccably tidy.
Because there are some people who say I love you with words and cuddles and a listening ear, and there are some people who wash the floor and make your supper and clean your hands and keep the freezer stocked and make sure you don't get lost when parts of you start to wander.
And God didn't just send His words, His messages of repentance and outrageous mercy.
Not just words.
The Word, incarnate.
He came and He worked and He served and He fed and He healed and He died for the whole lost wandering world.
Because love shows up.
In a dark night, in a manger, ordinary and streaming with glory, Love showed up.
And He shows up and He shows up.
And my Nana's heart has been beating for ninety-three Christmases, hard ones and joyful ones and lonely ones and full ones, and still she swells with tears of love and gratitude when she counts His mercies, counts all the ways He's shown her he loves her.
Wishing you an advent full of gratitude, friends.