Last Advent I tried something different. I kept a daily log of who I saw the face of Jesus in by their kind words, deeds or actions. My thought was that I would send the list — or at least that day’s entry — to the person letting them know I saw Jesus in them and that their kindness touched my heart.
Guess what? I never did that. Why not? No good reason that I recall. Just probably got wrapped up in other Christmas preparations — no pun intended.
So, here’s my list from last year. I’m only including initials rather than complete names for identity purposes, but I hope if you see yourself in my recordings that you know you were an inspiration to me. Keep spreading the love of Jesus this Christmas.
Who I saw the face of Jesus in:
- Nov. 23: MA for sending me my Advent Devotional Book.
- Nov. 24: MM for returning my canning jar and giving me a large bag of M&Ms as a thank you.
- Nov. 25: MS for hosting St. John’s Prep exchange students over the Thanksgiving weekend.
- Nov. 26: AM for all the wonderful turkey, stuffing and other Thanksgiving feasts she’s prepared.
- Nov. 27: JK for the same reasons — lots of wonderful food prepared with much love over the years
- Nov. 28: MM for taking all the girls ice skating at the pond across the road.
- Nov. 29: KW and EE for graciously reaching out to me at the swim banquet when I was by myself.
- Nov. 30: DM for bringing Justine home from BB practice in the snowy weather.
- Dec. 1: WK for pushing me out of their slippery yard when I got off track with the van.
- Dec. 2: ME for starting daily Mass with “O Come, O Come Emmanuel.”
- Dec. 3: MM for doing the car pooling tonight after BB practice.
- Dec. 4: EM for running off our Christmas letters.
- Dec. 5: SA for helping my hamstring get better.
- Dec. 6: BD for asking me to cater breakfast and lunch for his Advent retreat.
- Dec. 7: RK for being such a welcoming presence to everyone at the retreat and for helping me with the hauling, carrying, set up and dirty dishes.
- Dec. 8: LM for going on a walk with me and trying to console me about the new kitchen sink faucet.
- Dec. 9: MM for giving me the most hugs of anyone these days.
- Dec. 10: JM for telling me, “Don’t get too stressed, Mom” when I was fretting about something insignificant.
- Dec. 11: MK for just wanting the best for our girls.
- Dec. 12: JB for always being so gracious whenever I give her a loaf of bread when she’s the one doing the driving and thereby helping me out.
- Dec. 13: MK for writing me the nicest thank you note for the Wagner’s gift card when she was the one that gave me the beef — and really good beef it was!
- Dec. 14: SS for always being so grateful for the cookies I send her way.
These were some of the ordinary people — doing extra-ordinary things — that helped make my Advent journey a little more meaningful last year. More good news? The effort has really made me more conscious about seeing Jesus in others. I’m looking for him now! I mean, really looking for him. He’s there in people; I’ve just got to be more aware of seeing him.
Rita Meyer is married and the mother of four children age 17 and under. She and her family are members of St. John the Baptist Parish in Meire Grove. Email her at email@example.com.