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The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Message in a Bottle #4

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! But maybe not so much because of the much mistletoeing, and jingle belling, and marshmallows for toasting…

Though nearly everything about Christmas is wonderful, the things that truly inspire wonder are the smiles, the warmth in the dead of winter, the joy that springs out of nowhere at all, something I feel I’m less prepared for every year and yet it still finds me wherever am.

It’s also the solstice today. I love the solstice and how perfectly close to Christmas it is. It solidifies every defiance to the darkness. It is the literal end to the days growing darker. It is the gentle hope, of knowing things will be alright.

I know that not everybody celebrates Christmas, that it is a cause of sadness for some people. But what’s so perfect about Christmas is it IS infinitely sad and unimaginably glorious at the same time. The day Jesus was born to die for something we did. The day Jesus was born to put an end to sin and death.

So when Christmas comes to pry open the cracks in my heart I thought I had sealed up, I welcome it with bittersweet joy, because God doesn’t break without making something better than it was before.

I hope this Christmas finds you well. I hope it finds you warm and in the arms of loved ones.

It was overcast and snowy last solstice, but the sun’s come out today, and I’ll hold onto the hope that the clouds will stay scatter enough for the earliest sunset of the year to peak through before the longest night of the year. Maybe you’ll watch for it now too and together we can put the darker days of the year behind us, pondering of the day when the King of the universe left perfection to extended a hand to us, a hand that says, “Welcome home. I’ve been waiting with all the joy and warmth of Heaven.”

People always wonder where Christmas cheer comes from, but I think I have a pretty good guess.

Merry Christmas, my friends, and happy solstice!

your captain,

Ellie Maureen


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