The Wise Men have arrived at the stable. The cake was baked, and has long been eaten.

nativity cake

Daily, I find ornaments scattered on the floor. And the needles follow them with increasing speed.

Most years, I am anxious to reclaim the space in our home and in our routine, eager to set things back where they belong, to sweep up the needles, to dust the surfaces, and pack away the boxes. And yet, this year, I linger. Even though it is well past Christmas, even by our church’s generous Anglican calendar, I continue to rejoice. Even though the Virgin Mother is getting dusty, she still reminds me to be at peace. Even though the tree stand had its last watering weeks ago and the branches are dry as kindling, it continues to bring light to the darkness.

In a day or two, the job really must be done, before the fire-hazard of a tree becomes a fire-reality. But for today, I am lingering.