Christmas decorations were not included in the “absolutely essential items” that accompanied us in our 12 suitcases to Africa (but an excessive amount of warm clothes for the boys were…it is 70-80 degrees here year round, figure that one out!).  Thankfully we have done Christmas off in another land before so I began stock-piling trash to recycle into decorations a few months ago.  Sweet Reba sent a halothane jar for the anesthesia machine packed in shipping peanuts…those will work for garland!  My dear friend Shelley brought me chocolates wrapped in red Christmas foil…we will restuff them with a peanut and hang them on the tree like candies.  Mom sends books in plastic wrap, viola – angel skirts (with a peanut head)!  The kids have been hard at work bringing the feeling of Christmas into our home as we spend each night relearning the mysteries of Christ.  He is the LIGHT, the WORD, the CREATOR, the GIFT, the LAMB…He IS!  Recycling Christmas may be what we feel happens some years…the same story over again.  But it is always new and beautiful if we allow the truth and beauty of it to become real again.  The story doesn’t change, but we do.  We are challenged in new ways, convicted to new depths and awakened to new truths.  Our Jesus isn’t recycled, He is always new.  He wants to do something new in me this Christmas…overwhelm me with His AMAZING love in a TOTALLY NEW way.  Yes, Jesus, come!