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Life is wrong on so many levels. I spent a good bit of the last few days lamenting and grieving that even my small acts to insert beauty and goodness into this world are not powerful enough to overcome what is broken around me. Sometimes, we suck it up. These last few days, I decided to feel the pain of it.

I always double-take when people ask me, “What is wrong?” What, you don’t see it? Do you not spend time really processing what is going on in life? Are you not suffering? I don’t do well with other people’s pity of me or attempt to “rescue,” because I cannot feel that we are peers in weakness when that happens.

What about Christmas? It has something to do with my own longing and my own humility, that in and of myself, I cannot produce something completely and utterly beautiful, although I find myself constantly chasing the shadows of what I believe to be good. Christmas actually has something to do with my tremendous dissatisfaction mingled with stubborn hope. I have SUCH longing. Advent is about waiting. I often feel how small my body is to contain such determination. That feeling is called “helplessness.”

It was said by Isaiah:

For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the greatness of his government and peace
there will be no end.

I want that.

I don’t need science to prove a hope that never goes away and a longing to be utterly possessed by what is entirely good. No marriage nor friendship, no parent nor neighbor has been able to let me see, fully, what it means to have “great joy.”

For this reason, I love Christmas. It is a bizarre story of the coming of a child that ends up on a wooden cross. It turns me upside down and rejects my apathy. I will let that story stir up my imagination some more. But when it comes down to it, I do not need what is imagination. I do not need just a fantastic story. I can only abide by what is true.

Faith is believing in what is invisible. It is tricky business but the very source of my power. I don’t know what I am doing with this rambling. But I want to work out my faith, and I am not afraid to be known by everyone this way.