You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:13
Sadly, my friend’s parents have both passed away. Despite her loss, Judi not only feels their love and presence still, she physically sees them in the form of their favorite birds: red cardinals.
Every time she needs her parents, a male and female cardinal miraculously appear. Whether it’s outside the window of her apartment, or out the window of her car, the sight of those red birds brings her immense comfort and peace.
I’ve heard a lot of these stories. The physical presence may vary (be it a butterfly, dragonfly, etc.), but the concept is the same: When people look for what they need with the eyes of the heart and an unwavering belief, God responds.
The same holds true during Advent.
Although we each have our own needs, the common denominator is the same: We all crave hope and love. That’s exactly what God gave us in the form of His only begotten Son. Jesus is the complete embodiment of eternal hope and unconditional love. It’s that boundary-less love that had Him humbling Himself and taking on the form of a baby, vulnerable and poor.
We all get that His birth is the true meaning of Christmas. So, each year, we promise ourselves we’ll find quiet moments to sit before the nativity, seeking Him there. But the lists, and the gifts, and the cooking and baking all derail our good intentions, leaving us frazzled and miles away from peaceful.
But what if we changed our approach? What if we tackled the lists, and the gifts, and the cooking and baking (because they do need to get done), but we did so with the eyes of the heart?
We should never underestimate God. Like my friend, Judi, who earnestly seeks the love of her parents, and red cardinals miraculously show up, if we earnestly seek the Christ Child, He will show up too, no matter how busy our days.
He’ll be in the twinkle of outdoor Christmas lights that brighten our mood as we drive around town for carpool. He’ll be in the swell of appreciation we feel after receiving a heartfelt gift from a friend.
Jesus is everywhere and in everything, just waiting for us to see Him. We just need to look.
Questions for Reflection:
* Is it only when it’s quiet and peaceful that I’m able to seek and find the Christ Child during Advent?
* Is it possible to look at things differently, seeking and finding Him in the craziness of the season?
Aww thank you my friend. I am just reading this now but it is bringing a huge smile to my face. I like to think that God is the one who is urging my parents to “visit” me. That he the connection between us all.
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My sentiments exactly, Judi! I think our God is so loving and gracious, He creates these opportunities for our loved ones to show up in our lives in all these mysterious ways. I, for one, will never look at a red cardinal the same way again. They will now forever be God’s sign of love for you! 🙂