My Semi-Semi-Annual Christmas Letter…You can now celebrate

Dear Mom (and three other people who read my blog) —

I just realized today that it seems to have been three years since I last wrote a Christmas letter! I honestly
don’t know how the world has kept turning without my wit and sarcasm.

But don’t worry. I’ve been saving it all up for this year. And it’s a doozy.

 

Blog PicsIf I had to pick a theme for 2015 it would be “hang on tight.” Because for much of the year, I kind of just felt like I was along for the ride. A lot of things happened to me this year — and for someone who likes to be in control, that was a bit unsettling. I spent so much of the year praying for dear friends, sitting in hospital rooms, hugging and crying and realizing all I could do was cry out into the darkness and pray for Light.

Just a few weekends ago I went skiing, and as I careened down the hill, I found myself yelling “Get out of the way, I have no idea what I’m doing!” And I realized, that’s how much of 2015 felt to me. Exhilarating, dizzying, and completely out of control.

 

Let’s start on the work front, shall we?

As many of you know, it was a year of transition at Compassion. I lost some dear co-workers, but have found ways for me to continue to grow and figure out my place and calling. It’s been hard and good and I feel like I’ve really grown a lot this year. In the midst of a lot of turmoil, I have felt a tremendous amount of peace that definitely was through no doing of my own.

And in the middle of the craziest times at work, I traveled to five countries in two months. Of course I did! But looking back, the timing was perfect. Because there’s nothing that teaches you that control is an illusion quite like international travel to developing countries. I

n the span of those two months I made life-long friends, ate crickets, rode in the back of pick-up trucks, sang Beatles songs with a Mexican taxi driver and gently carried the priceless stories of release and rescue across the ocean, shielded in my weary heart.

It was an honor and a privilege and yes, sometimes a burden. But I wouldn’t trade one exhausting day of it.

 

By the time I got to August, it felt like I had lived a few extra months. So much beauty and heartbreak and life had been crammed into those first 8 months of the year. Surely, that was all.

Ha. Hahahahahahaha. HAHAHAHAHAHAHA.

I have vowed that I will not use a single cliche in the next few paragraphs. Nothing about “when you stop looking” or “love will find you.” I’ve been on the other side of those trite phrases, and I believe they oversimplify things at best, and do a lot of damage at worst. But what I will say is that in August I started emailing someone whose wit and sarcasm rivaled my own.

That when he and I finally met in September, I developed a major case of the butterflies, in which my butterflies begat butterflies at such an alarming rate I thought butterflies would began leaking out of my ears.

That by October I was in deep smit.

That as I sit and write this Christmas letter by the light of my Christmas tree, I can say that I am ending 2015 feeling supremely blessed, not just because I know what it’s like to feel cherished by a boyfriend, but because I know what it’s like to be loved by family and friends and a boyfriend and my Father.

 

This year has been filled with hardships and blessings. Brokenness and growth. Tears and laughter.

And love. So much love.

So, I hope you all have a Merry Christmas. And that whatever you are dealing with, be it sorrow or celebration, you will hold on tight and yell “Look out! I don’t know what I’m doing! But I am doing something!”

Love,

Brandy

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