Monday, December 26, 2011

The Sound of Christmas Dinner

A little over 24 hours ago, I had the distinct privilege of sitting down for Christmas dinner with the people I love most.   My mother continued the decades long tradition of making the Christmas ham, which my brother declared that everyone must eat or they don't get to open presents.    There were bowls full of stuffing, mashed potatoes, cranberry salad and so much more.   An endless feast if you will, where the bowls seem to fill as fast as a spoonful is removed.  

Among the food, there is another delight.   I stumbled upon it this past Easter.   With great anticipation, it is something I came expecting to indulge in during the Christmas dinner.   I was not disappointed. 

After the food is initially passed around the table, the conversations continue while everyone partakes of the provisions offered them.  And then it appears, if you silence your thoughts and your words, you will hear it.   

So that is what I did.  I didn't concentrate on the words of conversations or even what was on my plate.  Instead, I allowed the cadence of sentences, the soft crumple of napkins, the rhythm of breathing, the subtle thud of bowls being placed back on the table, the clanking of silverware upon a plate to form one of the most beautiful serenades you can imagine.    With the familiar smells of home-cooked foods from my childhood as the backdrop, there before me was a melody as sweet as one performed by any orchestra.   

You know how your heart swells up with joy when you hear beautiful music.  That is what happens in that moment for me.  The sounds of the voices of my parents, my spouse, my children and other extended family all coming together in that one brief moment before children become restless and the dessert is passed.   It is there that the sound of Christmas dinner is at its finest.      It is there that blessings from God come to life in a new and personal way and I am forever grateful for that holiday music. 

1 comment:

TC Avey said...

I remember the last Christmas I spent with my dad. He was in good health, no reason for me to think about him dying, but for some reason God told me to treasure those memories and I did. Eight months later he was gone. But thanks to God's directive, five years later I still have clear memories of that last Christmas. That was a wonderful gift from my heavenly father. When we listen to him, it really does pay off.