This is how Rachel and I's northern Christmas began. Riding the airtrain at midnight in search for a place to lay our heads. Unfortunately, JFK isn't the most accommodating for Caribbean travelers. We spent an extra 20 hours in the concrete jungle wearing every piece of long sleeved clothing we owned and warming ourselves with as much soup, tea, and airport blankets as we could find.
I had my doubts, but praise the Lord, we survived!
We made it home in time for Christmas!!! - Believe me, 'home sweet home' became all the sweeter!
Let me take advantage of the no-bandwidth limit and show you some sights of home before I go any further...
A word that came up in a conversation with my Tante Lil on Christmas Eve is the theme for my holiday blog.
It makes me think of a big fat steak on the grill... The sizzle, the smoke, the spice. Marinating means time and flavour, and I think it's the best way to express my tone of the past 2 weeks.
Snow. Wooly slipper socks. Broc and Ashley's big screen. Mall bargains. New Year's skating. Grandma's pink applesauce. Fourth Avenue lights. Music blasting from Rav4 speakers. Luau salad. Whip cream topping on a peppermint mocha. Harmonizing to a piano.
There's a glimpse to express that I have been fully saturated and smothered in the goodness of home.
And now I just want to marinate in it.
I just want to stop, stay and soak.
Heading back to the Buffalo airport isn't the most enthusing to me in this moment. It means heartaching goodbyes and itchy mosquito bites and long hours sitting at a screen computer writing report cards. There are things pulling me back to my Haitian home, but the roots that have gone down over the past few weeks would be very content to stay planted right here.
A few days ago I sat in a warm house full of ones I love the most and counted down to a new year. A new chance. A new beginning.
As the cheers dwindled out, I realized that there is a choice to be made.
To stay put, or to push on. To settle, or to want more.
I believe 2010 is going to be a year of new things. A year of highs and lows. A year of searching and finding. A year of fear and thrills. A year of possibility.
It's my prayer that I will look back a year from now and know that I stepped up to the plate. It's scary to venture out into the both the knowns and the unknowns, but that's what Jesus is talking about when He gives us life abundant.
In a few short weeks, my brother and sister, as well as my cousin Holly and my Opa will be joining me in Haiti. They are a part of the annual January team from Canada, and I can hardly wait to host them!
2010 also means more decisions, more challenges, more opportunities, more friendships, more experiences, more chances to live and grow and love. I am excited for what is ahead, and I want to be ready.
So I have a few days left to marinate. A few days left to enjoy a lack of responsibility. A few days left to bundle in sweaters and scarves and be with ones I love.
And then I get to embark on a new journey of a year.
It's time to get ready. It's time to step out. It's time to change. It's time to do a new thing.
But it's not just me, it's for all of us. Our lives may be but a whisper, but God still has big things in store for each one of us in this new year. Together, united, we can be a part of something so much bigger. May we embrace all that He has called us to this year. May we know we are deeply loved. And may that knowledge spur us on to fall deeper in love with Him.