It was the Christmas season and I was happy to be spending time with my family. My husband, two children, and I were at a local nursing home delivering our home made cards which we make out of recycled cards from Christmases past. We look forward to this tradition every year and feel blessed to visit all of our elderly friends.
It is always rewarding to see the look on the residents’ faces when they realize we made special Christmas cards just for them to enjoy. Many times they want to give hugs and kisses in appreciation. It is heart- warming to know that such a small act of kindness on our part is so greatly appreciated by those in the facility.
As much as I love this family tradition, it can be a little depressing at times, too. The nursing home we usually visit is in desperate need of repairs and a good make over. The paint has faded, the decorations are sparse, and it really just lacks that warm, cozy feeling you want your home to possess. It just seems dark and cold. Some of the residents’ rooms don’t have many personal items like family photos or pretty figurines and plants. The rooms seem bare and lonely, just as some of the elderly do.
However, on this particular visit to the home, we came upon a room at the very end of the hallway with the door cracked just a bit. This room appeared to be like all the others, nothing special about it all. There was no decoration on the outside of the door, nothing to distinguish it from the others. It had the familiar wood grained finish and room number plaque beside it. I knocked and heard a feeble voice say, “Come on in”. I opened the door fully and introduced myself to the tiny framed woman in bed, and then proceeded to explain the reason for our visit. As I was giving the red, handmade card to the woman, something bright and spectacular caught my eye. In the corner of the resident’s humble room sat the most beautiful angel lamp I’ve ever seen.
The lamp was absolutely gorgeous… the top of the angel was adorned with white sparkles and she wore a shiny, golden halo. Her skirt, which was actually the lamp, appeared to have a million brilliant specks of glitter swirling around in dazzling fluid. The combination of the light and sparkle was breathtaking and wonderful, giving off a brilliant cascade of perfectly speckled light on the ceiling and walls. I didn’t want to stop looking at the lamp because it was stunning.
But as I continued to stare at the angel, I was conflicted with thoughts the angel didn’t belong here – she didn’t belong in this room. That beautiful angel didn’t need to be in this indifferent, gloomy room. The space was ugly, nothing special, undeserving of the precious light from this wonderful piece. I suddenly caught myself wishing I could rescue the angel, that I could take her somewhere else, anywhere else would be better than here…
And then I was ashamed of myself for having those thoughts. I’m sure that the angel lamp brought much happiness to the little woman who stared at it all day. I’m certain the light the angel provided somehow warmed the lady’s soul and maybe brought her back to memories of happier times in her life. I don’t know the story behind how the lady came to acquire this lamp but I am sure it had significant meaning to her.
Since that day, I have thought about the lamp many times. I even nicknamed the lamp as “the glitter light” when describing it to others. I still think it is the prettiest angel figurine I have ever seen. As the lamp is still vivid in my memory, the Lord has reminded me of very important things during this Christmas season. The complete reason for this holiday is to celebrate the birth of His son, Jesus Christ. God sent His perfect, amazing, beautiful Son to our world… our cold, dark, ugly world. Jesus didn’t belong on earth, for He was too perfect, too Holy to be here. But God sent Him anyway, because it was part of His plan for salvation for us, for you and me. The Bible tells us in John 8:12, “When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.’” Jesus came to earth to be our light so we would never have to face the darkness of our sins.
How thankful I am God made the sacrifice of sending His blessed Son to my dark, sinful world so I may have the eternal life His light offers. Just as the angel lamp seemed out of place in that nursing home room, Jesus’ light seemed out of place on earth when he was born. Thankfully God didn’t rescue His Son, as I wanted to rescue the angel from her bland room. If God had rescued Jesus, we never would be able to experience His full light, the light that is even more brilliant and breath taking than the angel lamp could ever be.
My wish is for you and your family to have a very blessed Christmas that’s filled with the brilliance of Jesus’ light and God’s love this season and always.
Blessings and Merry Christmas,