Notes from Jan

Stuck in the Stable?

January 2, 2019

Today’s newspaper arrived without a thud. Pull the ads and there’s not much news.  Some editor made a decision to cut the comics in half, which is ok since they weren’t all that funny.

Started putting away Christmas yesterday, not much, just ribbons and wrappings left in a jumble when I flew off to California.

Easy to pack up the stuff, not the symbols, like the nativity, so it stays.  I need reminders.

Part of me’s still stuck in the stable.  I don’t want to leave this holy place to head for the hills,  face mountains of responsibility,  tend sheep, bear crosses of one sort or another.

Where’s an angel choir when you need one?

Where’s that reassuring voice declaring, “Fear not, I bring you Good News.”

You are blessed,  O Little Town of Bethlehem, especially one small space where holiness happened with global impact.  Part of me wants to hang out  in the stable and hope Joseph’s steadfastness, Mary’s faith and the love of Jesus will make its way into my quaking self.

As the story goes, even the Holy Family couldn’t stay put, they had to pack up what little they had, mostly a load of faith, trust, some gold, frankincense and myrrh, and head to Egypt.

As I faith this New Year, where’s my Bethlehem,  the place I’m hesitant to leave?

Where’s my Egypt, the place I’m called to make my way to this year?

Who are the wise men and women God’s tapped to be or bring gifts to provide for the challenges, adventures ahead?

For sure, Jesus isn’t stuck in the stable, asleep in the manger.

He’s with us, as we leave the safe and familiar, perhaps to discover angels still sing and Good News shows up, sometimes even in the Boston Globe.

Miracles happen.












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  • Reply Wanda Madden January 2, 2019 at 5:51 pm

    Jan, I was in the middle of my Quiet Time when this email came through.
    I had been writing about the discouragement I felt as I got face the day.
    Your insights have expressed exactly where I was standing.
    Thank you .
    Praying blessings over you today.

  • Reply Diane Belgard Allarding January 3, 2019 at 4:17 am

    By any chance, were you a teacher at Walter French Junior High School in Lansing, MI?

    • Reply Jan carlberg January 3, 2019 at 7:23 pm

      Yes! That was a long time ago but I remember you well…happily so., Diane.

      • Reply Diane Allarding January 4, 2019 at 12:49 am

        Such a treat to touch base again! My how 50 years has flown by. I’d love to hear more about what amazing things have happened aling the way in your life. Is there a better way to connect?

  • Reply Shirley Dubeau January 3, 2019 at 3:25 pm

    Hi Jan,
    Great questions to begin the New Year! Tomorrow is the first anniversary of our relocation after retiring (we like to think of it as “re-treading”).
    Last year, it seems, the Bethlehem and Egypt questions were addressed!
    This year it seems good to move on to :
    Whereabouts in Egypt, am I called to make settle for this season?
    Who are the wise men and women God’s tapped to be or bring gifts to provide for the challenges, adventures ahead?
    Thanks, as always, for your questions and insights … they help me along my way as I look to the challenges and adventures in 2019.
    Blessings on your 2019!

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