A little over a year ago, I was sharing a four-part series of articles about my Dad, chronicling his rise from coal miner’s ninth child to college athlete to NFL rookie to captain of industry.
A week and a day ago, my dad had surgery to repair an abdominal aortic aneurysm. While the surgery was successful, the recovery has been slower than we’d hoped. Considering his age and the size of the aneurysm, this isn’t necessarily unusual, but it has taken us by surprise. We’ll be spending Christmas with him in the ICU.
I am grateful for the many family members and friends who are lifting Dad (and the rest of us) up in prayer and offering comfort and support to me and my brothers. And I am hopeful for his recovery, even as it’s hard to watch him suffer right now.
If you are so inclined, please join me in praying for my dad. He’s the handsome guy on the right, pictured here with his equally handsome brothers.
In the midst of this difficult season, even through my tears, I am grateful to be reminded of the true significance of Christmas—and to realize that even as my own world seems to have shrunk to the size of an ICU cubicle, God is with me—with all of us—all the time. That was the point of him humbling himself to be born into a primitive society, to the humblest of parents, in the humblest of places. And it’s why, 2,000+ years later, we still commemorate that humble birth.
“The incarnation does not mean that God saves us from the pains of this life. It means that God-is-with-us. For the Christian, just as for everyone else, there will be cold, lonely seasons, seasons of sickness, seasons of frustration, and a season within which we will die. Christmas does not give us a ladder to climb out of the human condition. It gives us a drill that lets us burrow into heart of everything that is and, there, find it shimmering with divinity.” —Avery Dulles