I was dreading this year's celebrations. I found myself very torn between what God was calling me to do and my family's traditions. I made it very clear where I stood on the matter.
He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me:
and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.
Christmas eve arrived, and it was time for me to act. I decided to join my family in love. We ate dinner and had fellowship. My aunt made the first attempt to consider my changing heart. Our family puts pork in EVERYTHING, so after watching me pick through the few dishes I could eat, she informed me she was making her potato salad without the bacon her recipe calls for.
I was so very surprised. So much so that I teared up as I thanked her for the consideration she was showing me.
Then, it came time to sit around the pine idol and accept the gifts. I separated myself from this tradition. I was not ugly and accepted the one gift from my grandparents after this tradition was finished. I gave hugs and told them thank you.
I helped clean up the dinner mess as the rest of the family cleaned up the wrapping explosion. We gathered our things and said our good byes. One down. One to go.
The next morning, my daughter wakes up and asks me several times if God is going to be mad at her for opening gifts at my mom's house. She is trying to decide if she is going or not. I tell her I cannot answer that question, but if she is feeling convicted about something, she needs to listen to what the Holy Spirit is saying.
She told me she felt very confused about everything. I reminded her the identity of the author of confusion, and apologized to her for not knowing truth and teaching her these things so many years. We talked again about the feasts of the LORD.
I thought she might stay home with me, but then the truth came out. She wanted her gifts. I told her go ahead and receive the gifts that are now made more important than our Savior's birth AND resurrection. I said, "Before you go, tell me, out of all those decorations at Gammy's house, how many of them tell about the supposed true meaning of christmas?"
My daughter said, "She has one ornament." One. I nodded my head and watched her walk out the door.
I was told my mom, who has has vehemently waged war on my changing heart, bought me a wreath for christmas. I researched what they mean many weeks before. She bought me one, made one that says, "We speak HO HO HO in this house," and even encouraged my daughter to make one after finding out my research. This does not sound like the spirit of peace at work here. In all contradiction, it sounded like the spirit of spite.
Several hours later, it was time for the dinner back at my grandparent's house. I arrived late, which was not a worry considering the amount of food my family can produce. When I get there, my two aunts, grandfather, and family friend tell me they made their dishes without pork. I smiled and cried. I told them thank you. Hearts were changing!
No one would make comments or make fun of me to my person. I always had to hear about it from my sisters. Today was the first time in almost a year that my family made a change for me. They all have known I stopped eating pork for almost a year. I was blessed.
As the day progressed, I found out my mom gave the wreath to someone else. Her and my step dad also hurriedly took their tree down before inviting me over for a game evening. I inventoried all the information. I could not believe what was happening after feeling so alone and so out-casted this last year.
Only YWHW can change hearts. Do you understand that?! Only He can change hearts to be as soft and humble as His son and servants or as stone hard as the Exodus pharaoh. In preparation for this time, I started an unfinished study about our hearts and what it takes for them to change.
O that there were such an heart in them, that they would fear me, and
keep all my commandments always, that it might be well with them, and
with their children for ever!
1 Samuel 16:7
But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature;
because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.
1 Kings 8:23
And he said, LORD God of Israel, there is no God like thee, in
heaven above, or on earth beneath, who keepest covenant and mercy with
thy servants that walk before thee with all their heart:
1 Kings 8:39
Then hear you in heaven your dwelling place, and forgive, and act, and
give to every man according to his ways, whose heart you know; (for you,
even you only, know the hearts of all the children of men;)
For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the LORD, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments.
He takes away the heart of the chiefs of the people of the earth, and
causes them to wander in a wilderness where there is no way.
Thank you for stopping by and sampling some of the Word God has written on our hearts. I hope to continue to this study.
Yahweh bless and shalom.
Linking with Tracey today. <3
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