Encounter Culture

Advent wreath 2014I am blatantly stealing the term “Encounter Culture” from Pope Frances—but I don’t think he’ll mind.  I hope not….

As I consider the last days before Christmas BEGINS, I think about the ways in which I miss the whole point of the season, year after swiftly passing year.  I tend to get caught up in the details of shopping, sending out cards, finishing school assignments, getting cookies baked and decorated, remembering to take things out of the freezer to defrost…. I get so tired that my soul lays down and begs for a rest.

So, I try to make up for my spiritual emptiness by praying in the evening.  Unfortunately, my body thinks this is a good time to turn off my brain.  And so it is.  I am finding that praying is a sort of emptying experience.  I have to stop and not be efficient for a bit.  My to-do lists get shoved to the side and my self-esteem wilts as guilt kicks in, but then, I reevaluate my life.

Here is a little thought that has helped me remember the “reason for the season” and hug my relationship with God a little tighter:

If I miss God in my life, will I find Him at my death? 

December 15th was the 2nd anniversary of my husband’s death after a four year battle with leukemia.  My daughter and I went to his gravesite last weekend and placed flowers next to his tombstone—which bears my name as well. Charles Dickens was right on the mark when in The Christmas Carol he has old Scrooge finally relent and change his life when he sees his tombstone bearing his name.  There is something very “relentless” about confronting your name inscribed in stone and place your feet on the dead grass where your body will someday lie.

My heart beats at the command of God.  I don’t want to face a hole where a relationship with the Eternal should have been.

Each Christmas is a reminder of a universal truth—God lives and He comes to us as both Man and God for our salvation.

I may not be able to tuck and that under the tree, but my life can live the truth of it as I unwrap the gift of each day.

Novels by A. K. Frailey

Science Fiction

Last of Her Kind  http://amzn.to/2y1HJvg

Historical Fiction

ARAM http://amzn.to/2lTHVXR

Ishtar’s Redemption http://amzn.to/2kHKLtN

Neb the Great http://amzn.to/2kS1Ylm

Georgios I—Hidden Heritage http://amzn.to/2lscPWg

Georgios II—A Chosen People http://amzn.to/2lTK0mu

Melchior—Vengeance Is Mine http://amzn.to/2taeW2r

Children’s Book

The Adventures of Tally-Ho http://amzn.to/2sLfcI5

Inspirational Non-Fiction

The Road Goes Ever On—A Christian Journey Through The Lord of the Rings http://amzn.to/2lWBd00