Tuesday, December 21, 2010

12 Pearls of Christmas Day 9: Good News!

Welcome to the 12 Pearls of Christmas! Enjoy these Christmas "Pearls of Wisdom"! Please follow along through Christmas day as each post shares heartfelt stories of how God has touched a life during this most wonderful time of the year. AND BEST OF ALL ... there's also a giveaway!!!! Fill out the quick form at the link located at the bottom of this post to be entered to win a PEARL NECKLACE, BRACELET AND EARRINGS!  Pearls - a tangible reminder of God's grace to us all.

~~~
Good News!
by Deb Kalmbach


The first Christmas card of the season arrived in my mailbox way back in August. How could anyone be that organized? Then I noticed my friend, Nita, had sent me a card I had written to her more than 20 years ago!
 
Memories rushed back as I read the words penned in my familiar handwriting. It was Christmas, 1991, and my world had unraveled. I could almost pretend everything was all right at this most wonderful time of the year—but not that year.
 
My husband Randy’s drinking problem had escalated to the point where his job and career were on the line. He had already been through two alcohol treatment programs and managed to stay sober for short periods of time. Then he slipped back into old, familiar patterns. His ongoing relapses were a crushing disappointment for our family.
 
I had looked forward to Christmas Eve and our family traditions; making homemade lasagna, singing carols around the piano, attending the candlelight service at church, and then coming home to open one token Christmas Eve present.     
 
“Randy, are you ready to crank out the pasta?” I called to him over the Christmas music I was playing to lift my spirits.
 
I peered into the living room to see what was keeping him. My heart froze. Randy sat on the couch, trance-like, watching a basketball game while sipping a drink.
 
No, not on Christmas Eve, I screamed inwardly. I felt like I was suffocating. Usually Randy pulled himself together but it didn’t happen that night. He drank vodka all evening while I finished holiday preparations on autopilot. None of us felt like eating lasagna or celebrating.
 
Only a few days earlier, I had written these words on the Christmas card to my friend, Nita. I don’t know God’s plans, his timing or his ways in accomplishing his purposes, but I am learning to trust him. He is faithful!
 
I suspect Nita kept my card all those years because she saw a small seed of faith and it encouraged her heart. I didn’t know it at the time, but it would be eight more Christmas seasons before Randy experienced the miraculous breakthrough of finding freedom from alcoholism.
 
As I read the card I had written so long ago, I felt awed by God’s faithfulness to us—even when our situation looked completely hopeless.
 
You may be facing great difficulty as the holidays approach. The last thing you feel like is celebrating. And that’s O.K. The Good News of Christmas isn’t about picture perfect holidays where our homes are decorated a la Martha Stewart and tables are laden with holiday delicacies. Your days may not be merry and bright. You may be grieving the loss of a loved one or the loss of a relationship through divorce or estrangement. Your world has unraveled.

That’s exactly why the message of Christmas is Good News. The Savior is born! The One who came to set you free, to give you peace and hope and help beyond anything you could ever imagine is as near as your next breath. Today you might not be able to see how God’s purposes are unfolding for your future, but you can be assured that He is working all things for good in your life. A twenty year-old Christmas card came on a summer day as an unexpected gift and gentle reminder of God’s presence—especially in the worst of times.


 ~~~

About Deb: Deb Kalmbach is the coauthor of Because I Said Forever: Embracing Hope in a Not-So- Perfect Marriage and the author of a book for children, Corey’s Dad Drinks Too Much. She has contributed to The New Women’s Devotional Bible, Pearl Girls: Encountering Grit, Experiencing Grace, and other anthologies. She is a vibrant and engaging speaker who gives hope and practical solutions to those who struggle with difficult relationships. Deb and her husband, Randy, live in a tiny town in Eastern Washington. Visit Deb at: www.debkalmbach.com, or on Facebook and Twitter.

~~~

A three strand pearl necklace will be given away on New Year's Day. All you need to do to have a chance of winning is {FILL OUT THIS QUICK ENTRY FORM}. The winner will be announced on the Pearl Girls Blog (http://margaretmcsweeney.blogspot.com) on New Years Day!


12 Pearls of Christmas Series and contest sponsored by Pearl Girls®. For more information, please visit www.pearlgirls.info

Tags

#imabzzagent (4) 12 Pearls of Christmas Series (13) 2011 Book Blogger Recommendation Challenge (1) 2011 E-Book Challenge (1) 2011 Fantasy Challenge (1) 2011/2012 home education plan (1) 52 Books in 52 Weeks (25) 9/11 (3) ABC's (1) abc's of homeschooling meme (13) abc's of homeschooling meme homeschool (1) about me (2) accounting (1) Adult Fiction (16) Adult/Teen Fiction (29) all natural products (4) ambelside (1) Angels (1) anti-bullying (1) AP Prep (1) apologia (1) Art (5) audio (1) Audiobook (5) awards (3) B90Days (2) bakeoff (1) BB Media (1) beautiful tuesday (1) Bible (24) biography (3) Birds and Bees (3) blessings (1) Blog Cruise (19) Blog Vision (1) bloggers (1) blogging (1) Bloggy Boot Camp (2) bloggybootcamp (1) Book Challenge (2) Book Sneeze (1) books (2) boots (1) bullies (1) bullying (1) Burn Out (2) burn-out (1) buttons (1) buyer beware (1) Bzz Agent (2) challenges (1) Character Training (4) Charlotte Mason (3) children's fiction (12) Christian (80) Christian Encouragement (2) Christian Living (21) Christmas (7) christmasgift (1) church history (1) Classical (3) co-op (1) co-ops (1) coffee (1) coffee cup key (1) computer (7) computer skills (6) contest (1) contests (3) convention updates (4) cooking (1) copywork (1) craziness (1) Creation (1) Crossway (5) current events (1) devotions (1) Drafting (1) dreams (1) dresses (1) DVD (9) e-books (10) Easter (1) elementary school (4) Encouragement (4) English (11) Exercise (2) failures (1) farming (1) Favorites (22) feet (1) Fiction (1) finances (2) FIRST (12) five question friday (2) fluffiness (1) food (3) for mom (23) for sale (1) foreign language (1) fort (2) fractions (1) Free (3) freedom (1) full curricula (1) fun (24) games (13) gaming (3) geek (5) geography (5) Getting Started Homeschooling (6) gettingold (1) gift ideas (2) girls (1) giveaway (38) Giveaway Winners (15) giveaways (1) grace (1) graduates (1) grammar (1) graphics (1) gratitude (1) guitar (1) handmade (1) handsonlearning (1) handwriting (3) health (5) High School (45) history (21) holidays (4) homeschool (27) homeschool helps (18) homeschool misfit awards (8) homeschooling (24) homeschooling posts (4) hope (1) hormones (1) household (10) how to (1) hscrew (9) humor (2) imagination (1) insecurity (1) junior high (2) kindergarten (1) language arts (25) lapbooking (5) learning styles (1) lesson planning (2) library (1) life (1) life in my house (1) literature (6) LitFuse (8) love (5) magazines (6) makeup (1) Mama Kat's Prompts (6) mamakatsprompts (1) maps (1) marketing (1) marraige (2) math (24) media collective (1) memes (7) misc. (11) Miscellany Monday (2) money management (3) movies (2) music (22) mustread (1) my crazy life (2) my fiction (7) MyBlogSpark (19) NaNoWriMo (7) nature (1) nature's workshop plus (1) NetGalley (2) non-fiction (11) Nook (1) Not Me Monday (2) not perfect (5) notebooking (1) novels (16) online book (2) online learning (16) organization (1) Our Curricula (2) Our Family Homeschool (32) parenting (1) Parrish (1) personal stories (4) personal updates (33) perspective (1) phonics (2) photos (6) physical education (1) piano (1) picture books (3) pillsbury (1) pin curls (1) pinterest (1) pirates (1) Planner modules (1) planners (3) poetry (2) pop culture (1) pre-teen (1) preschool (12) programming (1) projects (1) promotions (8) prompts (1) puppets (1) QandA (1) question of the week (15) questions (1) Quotes (2) rambling (5) ratings (1) read alouds (3) reading (13) reading challenges (2) red dress club (5) Red Writing Hood (2) reflections (15) reluctant readers (2) retro (1) revell (2) reviewing (1) Reviews by Subject (1) romance (1) Sample Posts (1) sarcasm (1) SAT Prep (4) saving $ (2) scavenger hunt (1) scheduling (1) science (20) Scripture memory (1) search engine (1) selfhelp (1) she speaks (1) shiny stuff (1) Simple Woman's Daybook (1) Snacks (7) SOAP (2) soapbox (2) socialization (3) software (12) song (1) speakgeek (1) special needs (4) speech therapy (1) spelling (5) spiritual (9) steampunk (2) storytelling (1) strenght in homeschooling (1) strength in homeschooling (1) suicide awareness (1) teachergeek (1) teen (6) teen fiction (1) teenagers (2) temple con (1) thanksgiving (1) the curriculum choice (2) The Homeschool Misfits Awards (5) Thomas Nelson (5) thrillers (1) Thursday Thirteen (4) THV Link Up (1) timberdoodle (1) timeline (1) timer (1) top ten Tuesday (4) toptentues (3) TOS Crew (143) toscrew (1) tough topics (1) toydle (1) toys (5) Trdc (3) tutor (1) Tyndale (18) typing (2) Ultimate Blog Party 2011 (1) Unit Studies (5) unity (1) upcoming products (2) updates (1) used books (1) video (4) videos (1) virtual world (2) vocabulary (3) vote (1) Voyagers (1) walmart (1) Waterbrook (12) websites (6) wedding (1) Weekly Wrap Up (2) weight loss (1) welcome (2) Who Am I? (1) whowoulddonatethistothesalvationarmyinthefirstplace (1) wofimage (3) Wordless Wednesday (15) worksheets (2) worldview studies (1) Write on Edge (1) writing (16) writing prompts (3) yafiction (2) young adult fiction (1)

LinkWithin

Blog Widget by LinkWithin
 
Blog Design by A Mommy's Blog Design Studio (© Copyright 2011)