Tuesday 24 December 2013

So this is Christmas...

by Andrea Grigg

December is by definition an incredibly busy month. 

Add in a wedding anniversary and our three kids’ birthdays (I know, I know … what were we thinking?!?) and our December could be a tad busier than yours. 

But I don’t care – I love it. 

It’s also a time of hope, although this side of Christmas, our hopes tend to be rather arbitrary, eg. I hope the turkey’s cooked properly … I hope it doesn’t rain … I hope Uncle So-and-So behaves himself … 

Back in 1987, I hoped our second baby would arrive on time. As it turned out, I could have played Mary in a Christmas pageant. 

Eleven days after my due date, I went into labour at 5pm on Christmas Eve. It was also our niece’s second birthday (I told you December’s big for us) so off we toddled to my in-laws for the party. By nine o’clock I was holding up the wall while one of my sisters-in-law timed my contractions. 

Eventually, a number of concerned relatives prised my husband away from his game of table tennis (it was a battle of honour between siblings) and ordered to shower before driving me to hospital. Almost two hours later, at 1:16am on Christmas morning, Hayley (no, not Holly) was born. 

New life is an incredible thing, and lying there holding our newborn daughter, my husband and I thought all the things parents do when seeing their child for the first time. Who would she take after? What was her personality going to be like? What would she end up doing? 

I would have loved to be a fly in the manger and heard that first conversation between Mary and Joseph. 

Bringing a life into the world is a powerful thing. And when I think that the Son of God came to Earth in such a helpless and vulnerable way, it’s pretty darn amazing. 

There was a world of hope in God’s gift of Jesus. But what is hope? According to Google, it is: A feeling of expectation and a desire for something to happen, a feeling of trust. 

It seems to me that this year has been a long and difficult road for many. Countless friends and relatives can’t wait for 2013 to be over and 2014 to begin. They are grieving the loss of loved ones, battling health issues, facing marriage problems and financial crises. 

My prayer is that as we remember the birth of Jesus this Christmas, our spirits will be renewed with hope. God loves us so much more than we can imagine. He sees our hearts, hears our cries, and feels our pain. He is Emmanuel, God with us; Christ in you, the hope of glory. 

God bless you all this Christmas.

ANDREA GRIGG lives on the Gold Coast, Queensland, and is a writer of contemporary Christian romance. Her first book, A Simple Mistake, was published in April 2012. Recently retired from primary school teaching, Andrea is currently writing her second novel, tentatively entitled, Too Pretty. 

Twitter: @andreagrigg


  1. Excellent post, Andrea. Best wishes to you and your family for a joyful Christmas (and birthday).

  2. Beautiful, Andrea. Wishing you and your family a Jesus-full Christmas. And Happy 26th birthday Hayley.

    See you on the blog in 2014.

    Grace and peace.

    1. Thank you Ian. Have a blessed Christmas with you family.

  3. Amen to all you said Andrea and just wanted to say how much I enjoyed A Simple Mistake when I read it recently. You will find the review on Goodreads if you're interested.

    1. Merry Christmas Dale and thank you for the excellent review :)

  4. Andrea, great post! Happy Birthday to Hayley and Merry Christmas :)

  5. Yes, I hope you have a merry Christmas, Andrea. I know how you feel, because we have several December birthdays in the immediate and extended family, including me on the 24th.

    1. Hope you've had a very special day Paula. Merry Christmas!

  6. Well said. It is an amzing time of the year...and I love it. I'm glad, though, that our big birthday month is October. :)

  7. Lovely thoughts, Andrea,. and yes, we too know all about birthdays and weddings in December. One good thing about so close to Christmas is that as the family spreads across the country they can celebrate more than our Lord's earthday on the one flight to where we live. Have to confess thought that each year the hectic weeks do start taking their toll.

  8. Merry Christmas, Andrea. Our firstborn arrived four days after Christmas. We named her Sophie Holly and she's the best Christmas present, born the day before my Dad's birthday. Like you... we have lots to be thankful for every December. :)

  9. Thanks for this post, Andrea. I love the theme of hope you emphasise throughout it. God bless--and enjoy all your celebrations!

  10. Thanks Mary, Dotti and Jo-Anne - one more birthday (tomorrow) and our anniversary (the next day). We've still got plenty of celebrating in us yet! And since writing the blogpost, I've come to have a new appreciation for the word 'hope'. It's a very powerful one. God bless :)


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