Because I so rarely blog, I know there will probably only be 2 people to read this, and that is why I am a-ok with the fact that this particular post is for me. I am writing just to write, so if you do find yourself here I hope you are reading just to read. It is the day after Christmas, orrr Christmas Leave… Christmas Eve Eve, Christmas Eve, Christmas, Christmas Leave, which I guess makes tomorrow Christmas Leave Leave? I digress. My holiday was an interesting one. I am avoiding negative terms;
lonely, sad, weird, blah, because JOY is where I’m going with this, and now I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s take it from the top, shall we?
So, this was my first Christmas to spend apart from my family, all due to circumstance. This year I stayed home in Lubbock. I spent most of the day playing with my Izzy dog, painting, drinking coffee, relaxing, experiencing a strange solitude. It was hard. So hard that it’s tempting to use those words I crossed out earlier, but it was the best kind of hard; the kind of hard you learn from. There is a song by Relient K called Therapy, and it says, “Loneliness and solitude are two things not to get confused, ’cause I spend my solitude with You…” Because Jesus loves me sooo much, I never have to feel lonely. I still do, sometimes. I’m human, don’t misunderstand. I’m just reflecting on that subtle difference between loneliness and solitude, and I think it comes down to a choice. Yesterday, over and over, I told myself to make the best of it. It’s an attitude I think we could all stand to adopt sometimes, and that’s what I think this Christmas taught me. Choose joy. I remember about a month ago, I was thinking about joy and overthinking about joy. There was a series at my church about joy a few months before that, so I text my friend Jennie about it, and she sent me this quote, “Joy is God and God is joy. Joy doesn’t negate all other emotions; joy transcends all other emotions.” What it boils down to folks, is that true joy never leaves you, because God never will. So, I spent my Christmas with the birthday boy, Himself!
Ohhh, and with some friends, which brings me to my next point… More than ever before, I feel like my friends are my family. That is not to take away from my actual family at all! They are amazing, they mean the world to me, and I love them more than I can say. The part of my Christmas not spent at home was spent with a friend who cares enough about me to include me in his Christmas. I had lunch at his dad’s, met a lot of his family, and had my first piece of ‘ritzy pie’ (tastycakes, btw. I need to find a recipe). Meeting new people, especially in mass quantities, makes me nervous. I get quiet and weird, but they were all super nice and made me feel so welcome. For that, I was thankful. No matter what is going on with me, at the end of the day I am still so blessed. I think the key to joy is just taking the time to realize that and thank God for it every chance I get! It’s all about making a conscious choice.