Silent, Holy, Calm, Bright

“Silent night, holy night. All is calm. All is bright!”

As Christmas songs play throughout the day, each song brings reminders of the various ingredients of our Christmas celebration. Songs of joy, anticipation, reflection, praise… The other day as I was making lunch, “Silent Night” was playing softly in the background. In the midst of the busyness of getting lunch on the table and preparing a meal for our ministry event that evening, I was struck by four key words in the first verse. Silent. Holy. Calm. Bright.

Those four things are some of what I desire for my own family this Christmas. Life is going to be busy as we travel and celebrate and do so many exciting things, but I crave moments of figurative silence for us all to come together away from the noise of everything else clanging around us trying to distract us from truly focusing on Jesus. I desire this season to be holy, not simply fun and festive. Presents and all of the fun traditions are wonderful, but I pray that the holiness of this season is not choked out amidst those things. Calm. How do we achieve such a thing in the midst of life with 3 little kids, international travel, and holiday upon holiday? Like the figurative silence that I pray for, we are striving for calm by trying not to get caught up in doing, doing, doing, and going, going, going, but rather keeping things simple and clearing our schedule for the things that truly matter. Bright. May this season shine brightly as we strive to keep Christ kept at the center! Even the dark days of northern Russia are not enough to dim the light of Christ and the brilliance of His miraculous birth!

So, as we’ve been reflecting on what we want this season to look like for our family, I’ve decided to slow down a bit.  One thing that means for me is taking a break from Missionary Moms.

We will be traveling back to the States for about a month and then will be attending a conference on our way back to Russia, so I’d expect that things will get going here again in February. If you use a reader, go ahead and add Missionary Moms if you haven’t already to find out when things get going again. I look forward to seeing you all in the new year!

Have a merry Christ-filled Christmas season!


What are some things that you are hoping to characterize your Christmas season this year?


3 Responses to “Silent, Holy, Calm, Bright”

  1. 1 bradtfox December 7, 2010 at 1:45 pm

    Hope you have a wonderful Christmas with your family. Thanks for all you do here on Missionary Moms. My life has been so hectic lately, I haven’t been able to comment as much, but I try to keep up with the posts.

    This Christmas is really fun because Tristan, my oldest, is really getting the Christmas story for the first time. Seeing it through his eyes is just amazing. Right now all he knows Christmas is about is Jesus being born. I am kind of sad that when we head back to the US next week for Christmas and to have the baby that Santa can’t be avoided. It’s everywhere you go! It’s easy to keep him sheltered from that here.

    Hope is my word for this Christmas season. The anticipation of Christ and so many other things is what my heart has been dwelling on. Merry Christmas!

  2. 2 Alicia December 7, 2010 at 1:46 pm

    sorry, the above comment was from me…didn’t realize my husband was logged in. 🙂

  3. 3 RebeccaC December 20, 2010 at 3:08 am

    Hi, Ashley! Praying that all is well with your family as you travel! Vaya con Dios! ;^)

    Y’know, this will be our 5th Christmas in Mexico and I’m so glad that we’re here!!! It’s really a struggle sometimes — I’m sure that all of you ladies understand the word “struggle” — but I feel like we can really stay close to the “real meaning of Christmas” in this culture where the focus is really on Christ and not on MAS (which is really only ironic if you speak both Spanish and English. MAS means “more”.)

    Our family’s focus this year is “others”. Tomorrow we’ll be throwing a big posada (Christmas party) at a local migrant camp. The kids have been working their tails off baking and selling their baked goods, cleaning houses and anything else they can find to earn money and they’ve been donating it all into the party fund. They’re all so excited to see the little kids at the camps’ faces when they open their gifts.

    Oh, that we could keep ourselves focused on others all year long, eh? I pray that each of you has a blessed Christ-centered season!!! Merry Christmas y feliz navidad!!!

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