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Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Inspired by . . . the waiting

We all have expectations of life. Even as children, whether we realize it or not, we expect to be clothed, fed and cared for by our parents.

And in many households, especially in the US, we expect a lot of presents on Christmas morning!


Christmas was always a time of great expectation for me as a child. We lived in Vermont where a sparkling white Christmas was almost guaranteed. Mom always had the house beautifully decorated, nearly every surface was an offering to the season. Even the window panes boasted snowflakes and elaborate Christmas scenes. Our beautiful staircase displayed green garlands, gold beads, and white bisque cherubs. Mind your step, because the use of the railing was not an option at Christmas time!

We almost always had guests. Family and friends would descend upon us from various places around the northeast. No matter where I was in the house, I would listen expectantly for the sound of cars coming up our driveway. I can still remember the feeling of excitement as we waiting for our family to arrive! I’m not sure what enticed them more; the picture postcard Christmas scene, or my dad’s pies!

With great expectation, can come great disappointment. There is one Christmas memory that has stayed with me my whole life.

I was maybe ten or eleven, and all year I’d been wanting {the original} Strawberry Shortcake dolls. Christmas morning dawned, with all its wild expectation. My brother and I {nearly} dragged mother from the bed and made our way downstairs to the family room. The tree stood proudly over its abundance, and the antique bulbs winked at me with their secret knowledge. Once everyone had been assembled, the opening of the gifts began!

And I got exactly what I’d wanted. But not just one, I’d been given four Strawberry Shortcake dolls! Strawberry Shortcake, Orange Blossom, Raspberry Tart and, I can’t remember the fourth. But here’s the thing: I realized as I removed the bows and the ribbon and tore off the pretty Christmas paper, I didn’t want the dolls anymore. Somewhere between June and December I’d outgrown Strawberry Shortcake. The dolls were my “main” gift, so Christmas that year was hugely disappointing for this little girl. It was no ones fault; my sweet family had given me exactly what I’d asked for, and not wanting to hurt anyone’s feelings or seem ungrateful, I kept the disappointment to myself.

A silly memory. Maybe. But it was a valuable lesson to learn at such a young age. I think that is why the memory has stayed with me so long.

Sometimes we can receive exactly what we ask for, and realize we already have everything we really need.

Over the years other disappointments have taught me to temper my expectations. Perhaps it’s been the same for you. You learn that people disappoint, and material things don’t satisfy the way you thought they would.
Maybe you’re like me in this too; despite past disappointments, you can’t help but be expectant at Christmas time. Every year, no matter how hard I try, the sights, sounds and smells stir my senses and once again I am romanced into believing in miracles.

It’s called HOPE, my friend. We all need it.


Christmas is the season of HOPE.


The Hope of His Coming.

You’re hearing a lot about Advent this time of year. The word comes from the Latin ad venire and simply means: to come

Christmas is a day when we celebrate the arrival of the Messiah, Jesus Christ. And this advent season, is a season of waiting, of anticipating, of reflecting on the One Whom we are about to receive.

I hope you’ll join me over the next few weeks as we wait expectantly for His arrival. I have seventeen scriptures I want to share with you about His coming. Scriptures to encourage and inspire you to HOPE.

I know how precious your time is
this time of year.

I’m honored by
your presence


Advent Resources:


  1. June, this just may be my favorite Advent post read so far. Maybe it's because I so identify with what you have shared. Oh how I have learned this lesson . . . "You learn that people disappoint, and material things don’t satisfy the way you thought they would." This year my heart is so full of Hope and I am waiting expectantly for His arrival. Always so blessed by you, friend. Much love xoxo.

  2. Absolutely beautiful, June. Yes, Jesus is our hope and you write about it well.

  3. Yes, June, it is hope that is the best gift of all. And that hope was procured by The Giver, Jesus, who gave everything, including His very life, so that we might have the hope of eternal life. We are so blessed. As I approach this Christmas, I can't help but think about all that He has done for me, and all the promises I have to look forward to. He will NEVER disappoint!!


  4. June, I always enjoy reading your stories, memories, and wise counsel. You paint such a vivid picture! I remember one Christmas we pulled names in our 1st or 2nd grade class. I was so excited and hopeful that maybe one of the wealthier kids had pulled my name. We weren't poor, but we weren't rich either, and many times I was told 'no' for things I wanted. When the time came to open the presents I realized mine was from the poorest girl in the class. She was always dirty and her clothes never fit quite right. She always looked sad. I sat there and cried that I had received an obvious hand-me-down as a gift. The teacher comforted me and later I felt guilty. I think it was one of those lessons in life that God wanted me to learn. Took me years, but I did learn that gifts are not in material things. God's gifts are love, peace and joy. And so much more. That poor girl. If I could remember her last name, I'd look her up and apologize. Her first name was Ruth. Well, there I go rambling on your blog again!

  5. Merry Christmas to you!
    Christmas is such a wonderful time of year. This year I'm enjoying my son's delight in Christmas. He brings tears to my eyes as he talks about Jesus and can tell me more than I thought he knew about our Savior (guess he listens more than I realize).

    You were a sweet child to keep that disappointment to yourself. And you've grown into a sweet and wise woman. Thank you for sharing.
    God bless your writing ministry.

  6. When you wrote "You can't help but be expectant at Christmas", it made me think of the journey we all take... one that arrives with a birthing of new in every adventure. ;)


If you read something here that inspired you, I’d love to hear about it. Please know I appreciate every comment! Thanks so much for stopping by! Blessings, June