Advent Day 23: Recap and Wrap-Up

Armageddon cometh.

Friends, it’s two days until Christmas. Last night, a puppy slept on my lap and I watched A Very Murray Christmas because massages are relaxing, so no Christmas gifts were wrapped and no cinnamon ornaments were tied with little hooks and instead of some anecdote-turned-devotional you are getting this uninspired blog post.

Earlier yesterday, I exchanged gifts with work colleagues/friends over pizza at lunch, then drove to help my mom wrap presents for two hours together in her living room. I thought of a thousand things to talk about, from old family stories to favorite family recipes and didn’t realize how much I yapped until I left, laughing and telling one more story over my shoulder as I walked to the car. She’s home and she’s resting and we’re all resting in the relief that the terrible awful hopeful treatment is behind her, and now there’s only the wait. Only.

Shhhh, none of that right now; right now I am still resting in the loosed muscles in my neck and shoulders. “A little tension here,” the massage therapist murmured as he pressed against the nape of my neck. I successfully suppressed an audible moan-groan and wondered most of the hour how many people cry during massages. I’ve felt that way before, during yoga, a pose or muscle strain tweaking some nerve that triggers a body memory. I’ve laughed. I’ve gotten goose bumps. I’ve teared up. This time I shivered between long sighs and wet eyes, happy to be warm in a heated bed and willing an hour to be two hours without having to pay for the extra sixty minutes.

And then I came home and traded shifts with my husband, so he could go be one of the guys for a while and I could usher our children into bed with varying degrees of conformity before settling into my to-do list. Except, the massage. Rest. Bill Murray. Better yet, George Clooney. And Izzy, of course.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

Luke 2:8-12

Tomorrow is Christmas Eve. The night is almost over. The day is almost here. Light, come. Hope, come. Peace, come. Joy, come. Emmanuel, come, be with us.

Published by Sarah M. Wells

Sarah M. Wells is the author of The Family Bible Devotional: Stories from the Gospels to Help Kids and Parents Love God and Love Others (2022), American Honey: A Field Guide to Resisting Temptation (2021), Between the Heron and the Moss (2020), The Family Bible Devotional: Stories from the Bible to Help Kids and Parents Engage and Love Scripture (2018), Pruning Burning Bushes (2012), and a chapbook of poems, Acquiesce, winner of the 2008 Starting Gate Award through Finishing Line Press (2009). Sarah's work has been honored with four Pushcart Prize nominations, and her essays have appeared in the notable essays list in the Best American Essays 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2017, and 2018. Sarah is the recipient of a 2018 Individual Excellence Award from the Ohio Arts Council. She resides in Ashland, Ohio with her husband and three children.

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