The Christmas season reminds us of the quintessential occurrence of such wonderment year after year; yet, if we look around, we can find it even amongst us simple folk living a life on God's great earth.
I have spent the last eight days of nearly uninterrupted time with my girl -- playing Scrabble® and Monopoly® -- on "old-fashioned" board games -- along with LIFE® and a fabulous little puzzle featuring an annoying red block surrounded by "the enemy" which must ultimately find it's way out on a little gift from Santa called the Ipod Touch®; no board, no dice, no little alter ego figurines to march around -- only a quick flick of the thumb required -- and if I might add, fricking addicting.
But the amount of time with my baby girl...enjoying the days of Christmas hunkered down while keeping most of the outside distractions out, sleeping in and staying up late, eating every meal together, staying in our jammies all day long, playing games and reading in bed until our eyes can't stay open a minute longer -- wonderment happens.
As parents, we get snippets of time like this on rare occasions -- almost like a blue moon (by definition, two full moons within a month).
And as rumor has it, this December finds us celebrating such a thing come New Year's Eve; that's got to be something pretty special. According to the Farmer's Almanac, a blue moon occurs approximately once every 2½ years -- and the next one on New Year's Eve will be in 2028.
So keeping things in perspective and looking forward a bit, the next blue moon then should be on the horizon of America voting for our next President...of course, if we make it that far...
...And Lord knows what America will look like jumping ahead nineteen years; we have an idea certainly, things like medicare and medicaid and social security will most assuredly be a thing of the past...while this current health care legislation eclipses any and all likelihood of being deficit neutral and debt reducing come ten years down the line, let alone the decade after that. The Lord IS the only One who knows really.
It could be said then, the opportunity and ability to change our circumstances and our children's future only comes around once in a blue moon, or so.
A few stories have pulled at my heartstrings over this past week while being sequestered with my girl.
The saddest one being the death of a Salvation Army Major, Philip Wise; upon Christmas Eve, while dropping off his wife for her turn to ring the bell and collect donations, and in the midst of the eyes of his three children, his sixteen year career within the organization came to a sudden horrific end during a robbery.
How this can happen here in America, I do not know; but as a mom, all I can think about is the children. While my girl fell asleep with visions of sugarplums dancing in her head, these babies belonging to Mr. and Mrs. Wise were utterly blindsided and crushed by a senseless act of terror upon their father. How could this have happened and how on earth does a family find the strength to recover?
The motto for the Salvation Army is "doing the most good;" if inclined to do a little good for benefiting music programs, apparently a passion of Philip Wise, through the Salvation Army, you can contact them directly on their web site at Salvation Army USA • AND Gifts can be made directly to the family of Major Wise by sending checks payable to The Wise Family Memorial Fund to Centennial Bank at 13910 Cantrell Road, Little Rock, AR 72223-- Donations to the Wise Family Memorial Fund can be made using account No. 500114452.
The next story is about another man, Russell Hayes. His story is one that hastens us not to question when something extraordinary is asked of us; and simply begs us to answer by our service to something greater than ourselves. Click in and have a read if you haven't already heard...a story of one man's mystery touched by the hand of God, connecting him to a family half way around the world through his allegiance to the Army he once served -- and though long past retired, called for his return, to Iraq of all places.
The beauty of once in a blue moon can be seen in the spirit of how we are all connected in the line of duty, not understanding the good that can come of a situation when confronted by the horrors of a war torn country and a helicopter pilot called in after he already had served his time. How could it happen? Why was this being asked of him? Why now, Lord?
His wife simply said, "Why fight it? Maybe God has a reason for you to go to Iraq."
Little did he know what was in store for him; oh my, we are so small minded sometimes, aren't we?
"according to your faith will it be done unto you"
Our lives touch each other in ways we do not know; when revealed, whether in the moments that happen in our simple every day to the moments we find only once in a blue moon, we find ourselves on our knees in God's grace, realizing we live in community and not alone.
There is only one more story I wish to unveil today -- that being from the life and times of a small family upon Christmas Eve and the birth of a child. No, we are not returning to the story of the baby Jesus -- where G left off a week ago Monday -- but we are awfully close to it in a manner of speaking.
The mother basically experienced a cardiac arrest and died while in labor with her third child. The doctor had to go in with an emergency cesarean section to save the baby -- a boy -- only to find him without a heart beat.
a miracle happened,
both of them came back to life.
One minute the father was watching half of his family die right before his eyes and the next, he is smack dab in the face of a miracle (make that two).
Today, G finds herself in a rush to sense the magnitude of life on earth and our ability to connect the dots of once in a blue moon experiences -- not only in small ways like devoting eight days and a lifetime to the little ones in our care -- but also in our responsibility on a grander scale -- from uniting communities through the avenues of the Salvation Army to the uniting of cultures on the other side of the world in links unimaginable by the United States Army.
We are all a vital part of the community we call AMERICA; in a way, some could say a country like ours only comes around once in a blue moon, but today I am reminded, we are most certainly called to protect it every four years -- which means -- it takes nearly two.
Make it a Good Day, G
this New Year's Eve -- with the blue moon and all -- only coming around so often...
do nothing else but be with the one (s) you love -- nineteen years until another one comes along.