Notes from Jan

After All’s Said and Done

December 27, 2018

The days following Christmas, for too many of us, spiral down to overflowing trash bins and treks to stores to return goods or hunt bargains.

What was it like in the days after Christ’s birth?

Who’s still hanging around The Miracle, still swaddled and sensing he’s left far more than a womb?

The shepherds, heads held higher since tapped by God to welcome the baby in a barn,  head to the hills to do the work of tending sheep and telling The Story.

The angels fly off to handle their newest assignments.

The Innkeeper still stunned,  wrings his hands and shakes his head over what’s been happening outside his Inn.

The stable needs mucking out, animals need fresh straw and feed, and The Miracle needs diapering.

Then, there’s the very young mother, Mary, body sore and tired, breasts tender from a nursing baby, pondering this mystery she cradles,  while crooning a lullaby to the One who is God’s Heart Song to all the weary world, then and now.

Joseph still stands watch over what he doesn’t fully understand but trusts all will be well. His old worries of finding a place for Mary and the unborn child, not of his seed but his to love and raise,   now wonders what’s ahead,  fights panic  with prayers, “Sweet Jesus…Mary…God have mercy.”

Ahh, Joseph, I’m with you, inhaling leftover holiness, exhaling prayers for mercy.

I see you pondering, Joseph, duty on the brain and dung on your sandals, not unlike the rest of us trying to trust God with what we don’t understand.

Wondering what’s next?

I hear you, Joseph, “Stand watch over those you love,  and take heart. The story’s still being written.”

Good to know, Joe.

Faithful and trustworthy.

Isn’t that what most of us long to be, after all’s said and done in the days after Christmas?




















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  • Reply Sue Andringa December 27, 2018 at 8:33 pm

    Yes, it is! God bless you, dear Jan, as we look forward to a new year and how God wants to make Himself known to each of us…. in our lives, our families, our country, our world, and in all of our relationships. <3

  • Reply Maggie Rowe December 27, 2018 at 9:04 pm

    The morning after The Miracle. Fresh spiritual food to ponder. Thank you Jan!

  • Reply Shelly December 27, 2018 at 9:09 pm


  • Reply A;lice Mathews December 28, 2018 at 10:19 am

    Jan, I’ve read and re-read this blog over and over, soaking in its profound truth, pondering what at times feels imponderable. Thank you, dear friend, for insight that captures the sloping back of a question mark where we live. Good, good Joseph….

  • Reply Linda Moore December 28, 2018 at 7:42 pm

    I love this Jan-I’ve been pondering some of these thoughts myself, but you helped to flesh it out even more. I love the giftedness our Lord has given you to bless us!!!!

  • Reply Jim Zingarelli December 29, 2018 at 9:25 pm

    You sum it up here Jan:
    “I hear you, Joseph, “Stand watch over those you love, and take heart. The story’s still being written.”

    It’s a New Year’s call to faithfulness knowing that we’re not finished, and God is far from done with any of us.


  • Reply Wendy Lane January 6, 2019 at 7:33 pm

    So good Jan – yes! May God find me faithful and trustworthy – no matter what.
    Just returned from Christmas in Morocco. What an adventure. I’m glad to be home!
    Love you!

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