A Little Wife Christmas (reprise)
“Hurry, hurry, hurry,” Little Wife whispered to herself. With just two days left before Christmas, Little Wife was in a terrible bind. She wanted to buy the perfect gift for Big Man, but the stores were all out of the popular tech gifts, the 3X buffalo plaid flannel shirts, his favorite vinyls and vintage whiskey. Little Wife was left holding the bag, and it was pretty empty.
She chided herself for waiting until the last minute to do her Christmas shopping, but she had been so busy serving Big Man, cleaning their house, decorating with all the prettiest lights and tinsel stuff and hand-stamping the annual clutch of Christmas cards to send to his family. She being so small and with very little help from Big Man, Christmas was always a large project, an undertaking of the most daunting circumstances.
So now here she was with a bag full of nothing, really. She was hurrying home to wrap it all up and make nothing look like something. If she could just get into the house quietly and upstairs to her wrapping area before Big Man noticed, then she could possibly pull this off.
Little Wife carefully opened the front door but the jingle bells still jingled loudly announcing her late arrival. From the kitchen, she could hear the sounds of dinner preparation, pots clanging and knives chopping, and she could smell the usual onion/garlic/celery saute mixture that Big Man loved so much. As usual he was very focused on his culinary habits.
Quietly so as not to interrupt his deep concentration of cooking, she stepped through the doorway towards the hallway, closer and closer to the stairway, always as though she were walking on eggshells. She could see the shadow of Big Man falling out of the kitchen and laying on the floor, ominous as always.
Climbing the stairs to the gift-wrapping area in their bedroom, Little Wife heard the radio playing Christmas carols, and she took a deep breath to steady herself and be on high alert here in the darkest part of the house. Even with the pretty lights on the front porch and the evergreen Christmas tree, the music and the smell of supper, the heart of Little Wife was heavy and hopeless.
Could Jesus see her sadness? Where was the Joy to the World? How did she end up so very small in a grim marriage where she had no control over her life, but only obliged to obey and serve at the whim of a husband whose moods were as blustery as the winter wind? She wished she was far away in a little town of Bethlehem right now. Little Wife had very little hope of a Silent Night, let alone a Holy Night…
As quick as her little hands could go, Little Wife wrapped up those gifts for Big Man. She was truly a skilled gift wrapper and when she was all done, she stepped back and admired her work. All tidy corners, no tape showing, the ribbons matched the papers and all was well with her soul. She gathered the gifts up in her little arms, realizing that nearly an hour had passed since she started her work. She had been so preoccupied with her wrapping and the thoughts inside her head, she had completely lost track of time.
And then Little Wife sensed that something was terribly wrong all around her. The house was too quiet. She no longer smelled the supper or heard the music from the kitchen. As she took a small step towards the door, Big Man suddenly stepped out of the shadows of the hallway, his big face menacing with a terrible grin and his large arms reaching, reaching, reaching and blocking her exit from the room.
“My Little Wife! There you are! It’s time to mix up the Christmas cookie dough, and I need you to crack the eggs, because I don’t like the messy eggshells…” Big Man wrapped his big hairy arms around Little Wife tighter and tighter, and as the last bit of holiday breath was squeezed out of her little lungs, she squeaked, “stop, I can’t breathe”.
Big Man relaxed his terrible grip on Little Wife and sneered, “Where were you? I’ve been waiting for you and you didn’t call or check in. You know how much I love you and want to know where you are at all times. And don’t even start crying because you know I hate your tears. Come on, now and let’s go mix up those cookies…”
The messy eggshells. Little Wife walked on them everyday, and he didn’t even know.
Chaplain’s Note: Gentle reader, the Light of the world has come, despite what you might be going through. Jesus came to deliver us from oppression, from despair, from violence, from coercive control and fear. Jesus is Immanuel, God with us. He is our Wonderful Counselor, Almighty God, Everlasting Father and Prince of Peace. He sees your pain and wants to help you. He loves you and has a GOOD plan for your life, a plan to bless you and prosper you, to give you a hope and a future. Not eggshells.
He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. Colossians 1:13