The closet’s lined with cedar. Crack open the door, breathe, step back in time, if only to retrieve winter woolens.
I’d gone downstairs to haul up boxes of ornaments, forcing myself to make Christmas happen, to replicate, as much as possible, what Jud and I did together for more than 51 years.
The ornaments were in containers, on the floor of the cedar closet, “where neither moth nor rust” feel at home.
After pulling out the boxes, I noticed a shelf where quilts rested, then another, for woolen sweaters. That’s when I saw Jud’s Norwegian sweater. To see and touch, took me back to Christmas 1961, when Jud came for Christmas in Greensboro, North Carolina. We weren’t officially engaged until the following May but that didn’t stop my grandmother, Bestemor, and parents from presenting Jud with their blanket approval, a hand knit Norwegian sweater. Pretty hard for him to back out now!
And he didn’t.
I can still picture Jud, reserved and slightly awkward, slipping his long arms into the sweater, as my gregarious family oohed and aahed in English and Norwegian.
Jud smiled, that killer grin that “had me at hello.”
We both wore Norwegian sweaters for our first Christmas photo in 1963.
The psalmist writes,” (God) You knit me together in my mother’s womb..all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” (from Psalm 139)
Remembering God knows, nudges me to be brave, open the boxes of memories and let gratitude make Christmas come alive, again. And when it feels life’s unraveling, to trust Jesus to knit together past, today and someday into something worthwhile, worthy of His while on earth.
Crack open the box.
God’s blanket approval.
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