Tuesday, December 8, 2009

A Different Kind of Christmas

A football player. A beauty queen. A riveting romance that led to marriage. And two children. And thirty-something years of celebrating birthdays and holidays together. But this year, Christmas will be so different for all of them. You see, when their kids were young, she began to have serious health problems. Local doctors referred her to specialists. Her husband drove her to Atlanta. To Emory University Hospital. He would have taken her to the ends of the earth if he thought that would help. So, the doctors diagnosed. Medicated. Operated. Gave hope. She would live, but she wouldn't be quite the same. Almost overnight, the slim, lanky good-looking girl with long, blonde hair. Class valedictorian. Math whiz. Scholarship winner. Warm. Articulate. Dazzling. Outgoing woman. Changed. She gained weight. Lost her hair. Had some difficulties in communicating. She struggled sometimes trying to care of her children. Her house. Her husband. Herself. Over the years, she experienced a few setbacks physically. Probably, spiritually, too. Yeah, she changed. But two things never changed. Never wavered. God's love for her. And her husband's love for her. And she knew that. Her husband could have walked away. Could have looked for love elsewhere. But he didn't. He stayed right beside her. Loving her. Taking care of her. No matter what. It seemed to me that he lived. Ate. And breathed Ephesians 5: 25. Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her. This man loved his wife. His woman. His bride. He gave to her all that he had to give. And then some. And, today, in a soft, but steady rain, he buried her. So, yes, December 25th, 2009 will mark a different kind of Christmas for this precious, grieving family. She will celebrate her Savior's birth in a new way. His death. Her death. His resurrection. Her resurrection. His salvation. Her salvation. Face-to-face with Him. Sounds like a party over there. And I believe that her children will gather around their daddy. They will share memories of their mother. They will mourn their great loss. Not quite as much a party here maybe. And although it will be so soon after saying goodbye to her. And still a steady rain in their heart. I pray that they will find the peace and comfort and joy that they need to make it through this season. Will Christmas be different for you this year? Because of illness. The loss of a loved one. The loss of a job. If so, then please know that I have prayed for you. That you will experience the Savior's amazing love and hope during this time. Because it can be tough to celebrate when it's a different kind of Christmas. Sweet dreams, Deb


  1. Deb, this story touches me. The Ephesians 5 man loving his Ephesians 5 wife. It's beautiful. Thank you for sharing it with us.

  2. Heartbreaking story, but one that happens in real life more often than we care to stop and think about! The holidays aren't such a happy time for every family, so I'll join you in praying for them!

    Merry Christmas!

  3. What a tribute to the husband and his wife. I hope you share this with them. Great comfort in knowing there's a heavenly party going on. Wonderful post and words.

  4. Dearest Deb,
    What a beautiful Christmas story. Unconditional love. Covenant love that remained true to the wedding vows...in sickness and in health, for better or for worse...till death do us part. My heart breaks for that man but at the same time my spirit rejoices. Satan tried to kill the love but didn't succeed. A faithful representative of God's heart to this wicked, crooked and perverse situation.

    Thank you for sharing.

    And if you have a chance, tell that man that the story of his love touched my heart deeply today.


  5. A beautiful love story that mirrors God's love for each of us and brings it 'home'--thanks for sharing this, Deb...may God's touch be manifest in the lives of those who grieve..
    Love, Sita

  6. This post reminds me of a Carolyn Arends song. We've Been Waiting For You. Let me see if I can round up the lyrics somewhere.... Beautiful, just beautiful.

  7. here it is, the last verse came to mind as I read your post.


    our death is like a birth, into a whole new life. The life we were designed to live. Now she's waiting for him and her other loved ones to be eternally reborn as well. It really takes the sting of death away doesn't it? Love you, Deb.

  8. What a beautiful story. A sad one on the one hand but what a glorious one on the other. I will pray for her family and others like hers who have lost loved ones recently.

  9. I know many who will experience some "pain" this Christmas for the very reasons mentioned here so eloquently, Deb. Thanks for remembering them all; you've prompted me to do the same.

    Also, thanks for your call last week. How did the interview go? I'm afraid I came in on things from the backside, but still offered a word of prayer for your daughter. Let me know.


  10. Very sad, but a beautiful love story, as well. They were lucky to have each other all those years.

    Been thinking of you a lot ... hope you are doing well. Will try to call you before Christmas to check in! ;0)

  11. ...this is an amazing post of what love is and what Christmas should be all about - thanks Deb. Your heart is beautiful. It flows out from your words. Sarah

  12. What a beautiful story...I am so happy to have a few hours to catch up on blogs...I am finally finished with trees. New pictures are up on the Christmas blog!
    http://grammyababychangeseverything.blogspot.com/ then

    read about a miracle and forward on to anyone that is feeling hopeless....Christmas is the season of miracles..

  13. Thanks Ms. Deb. My daddy did (does) love my momma. It will be a hard Christmas for us, but with God's help we will make it through. My dad and mom's love story is a love story worthy of worldwide fame, but my daddy maintains that he just did what he promised he would do, and in his eyes she was always his beautiful bride. Just to let everyone on your blog know, my daddy is just as much of a hero as you are imagining and is just as Godly of a father as he was a husband.

  14. Beautiful tribute to love & life. It comes and goes but what is in between is what matters most.

    Only He can touch hearts & lives that will make a difference for eternity.