Our winter plans changed, but more on that soon.  When we left Washington, we made the long trip back to Idaho.  The first night we were here, we went to the nearby Temple and walked the grounds.

The simple Nativity scene was affecting.

The thought of a tiny, perfect son, come to save, change, and rescue.  It has affected me more this Christmas than it ever has.

We were tired, worn, and had been a very long trip.  The girls wanted to go into the Visitor’s Center to see the Christus.  I felt keenly aware of my physical appearance.  I hadn’t had a shower in days.  My matted hair beneath my stocking cap had been hiding there for goodness knows how long.  I had worn the same clothes for 72 hours straight.

I removed the hat hiding my hair and approached the statue.  I was afraid I’d feel so unworthy and unclean…not only physically, but in so many other ways.  I have wrestled with my broken heart and the new person I have so desperately been fighting to become.  I barely lifted my eyes, but longed to be nearer.

This Christus is able to be touched, which is rare and nice.  The girls, especially the young ones, ran to Him.  My sweet four-year-old said, “I want to hold His hand.”  I went with her, and as I stood close, watching her hug the Savior and hold His hand, I felt washed clean and made new.  I felt that He saw nothing, nothing, about my hair or my clothes.  But I knew He saw everything inside of me.  He saw my sorrow and my joy, and all that those things were helping me to become.

I used to worry that I’d feel so completely unworthy when I finally met Him, forgetting completely that He loves me perfectly and that He did everything He did to wash me clean of all I have left behind me.  I’m not worried anymore.

Since then, I have been different.  My eyes have been so open to the love and the help of the Lord in my life.  In the past two weeks, time and time again the tiniest miracles have happened, little things that showed me that He knows exactly what is in my heart and that He knows exactly who and what I need, right in that moment.

Tonight, the girls are tucked snug in their beds.

Quiet reigns in our tiny home, and I alone am awake, with thoughts of Christmas.  Snow is falling outside and I can hear each flake as it falls from heaven to the roof.

This silent and holy night is a gift, just as this year has been.  A chance to become new.

In my wilderness
I’m not comfortless.
He is there–

Holy Counselor,
Friend and Rescuer,
He is Hope–

In forgiveness
He is wondrous.
He is love–

He will hear me,
Comfort, cheer me.
Loves me dearly–

And I’ll praise Him evermore
He opened Heaven’s door
Give my heart to Him–
He let me in.

In His kindness
He is gladness
He is joy–

Gave His life for me
Paid the price for me
He is my

-Melanie and Roger Hoffman
(Download or listen to this beautiful song here for free–legally!)

Merry Christmas, dear ones.  May you feel His incredible love today.

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