Thirteen Days Until Christmas

Whoops!  I skipped a day.  It must be getting close to Christmas!

What gifts can we give?

Example.  But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.  Prov. 4:18

I have a friend in her early 60’s who told me about a wonderful family reunion she took with her husband and all her grown children and grandchildren in Jamaica.  Before she went they read about Jamaica, planned where they wanted to go and what they wanted to see.

They had a fabulous time, but the most memorable experience for her was climbing the waterfall at Dunn’s River.  The family had gathered with other tourists as a group planning to climb the Falls.  The guide, a young Jamaican man, spoke to the group about the rules and the need to be careful climbing the falls.  He emphasized that they needed a leader for the group.  He looked over the members of the group, studying each one carefully.  Finally he approached my friend.  “You will be our leader, Mother.”  She looked at the young, strong, healthy people around her.

“Me? I am not the leader.  I’m too old.  You should really pick someone else.”

No Mother.  You are the leader.  I need someone with judgment and common sense.”  He went on to explain that she must hold on to his hand, and to the hand of the person following her.  If she let go of his hand, she and those behind her would be lost.  If she let go of the person following her, all those behind her would be lost.  She must watch carefully and place her foot where he placed his.  Those following her must watch her and place their feet where she placed hers.  She was responsible not only for herself but for everyone who followed.

She followed the guide, holding his hand and the hand of the person behind her. The group followed behind–a human chain.

She climbed up through the falling water, stepping where he stepped, pausing where he paused.  At the top was a large pool.  Again the guide warned her.  Follow me.  The pond looks placid, but if you step out in the center the current will carry you over and down the falls.  You do not want to make a misstep now.

Her body was physically tired.  But she was exhilarated.  Then she told me that she thought of that experience as a metaphor for life.  Christ asks us to follow him, to put our hand in his, and to walk where he walks.  If we fail to follow, we may fall.  But, we must also hold out our hand to those who follow us.  Our children, our grandchildren–God’s children–look to our example as we follow Christ, and if we can hold on they may follow safely.  There are hidden dangers, but if we follow we will arrive in safety.

We have a loving Father, loving parents, good examples all around us.  We are part of this chain, one link in the journey through life back to our Heavenly Father.

I love this story my friend shared with me.

Example.  A gift that shows the way.

Merry Christmas!

About Karen Hopkins

Karen Hopkins (1949-) was born in Los Angeles and raised in Martinez, California. At seventeen she moved to Talcahuano, Chile. After completing her university degree she worked in London, England for Pan American Airlines and traveled extensively throughout Europe, the Middle East, and India. For twenty-six years Karen taught Spanish and English as a Second Language in a variety of settings including a private school in Panama, the "most remote school in the United States" in Ticaboo, Utah, the Navajo Reservation, and a teacher exchange in Hermosillo, Mexico. Karen and her husband traveled extensively throughout Mexico and Central America, spending many summers in the highlands of Chiapas and Guatemala . Karen currently lives in Southern Arizona, near the Mexican border.
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One Response to Thirteen Days Until Christmas

  1. amylou413 says:

    What a great story 🙂 I love how she applied it to her relationship with Christ. Thanks for sharing 🙂

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