For those of you who are wondering – yes we have put up a Christmas tree and decorations this year. When I say ‘we’, I mean the kids – they did it all.
The crib figures are older than me – they were passed down to me from my parents. When I was growing up, the baby Jesus NEVER went in until midnight on Christmas Eve. I remember as a child, the manger lying empty the days leading up to Christmas, then getting up on Christmas morning and finding Jesus lying in the manger.
In pride of place on our mantelpiece is this beautiful Christmas Tree, hand made by a very dear friend called Esther Scobie.
Esther went to our church. She and I also attended a Precepts Bible Study group together. I used to love the Precepts Bible Studies but I gave up in February 2013 when I was becoming increasingly stressed about Leah’s blood results. There’s considerable homework with the Precepts Bible Studies and I no longer had the concentration or attention span to do it justice.
Esther’s contributions used to be amazing in our Bible study meetings. Everything she said was so relevant and meaningful. I shared a lot of personal stuff with Esther too, she always seemed so understanding.
Esther never lost the traditional art of letter writing. Over the years I received many cards from Esther, each containing welcome words of encouragement.
During Leah’s illness and especially during our time in Bristol, Esther was one of many dear friends who faithfully sent us cards and letters. Leah and I were the envy of the other residents of Sam’s House in Bristol, because the majority of the daily post used to be for us.
Esther’s cards were often accompanied by gifts as well. Her kindness and that of so many others, made our journey a little bit easier. Here is one of Esther’s lovely cards that we received.
Sadly, in April 2014 Esther went to be with the Lord, after going into hospital for a surgical procedure. So many of us mourn her loss, along with her heartbroken family.
A.A. Milne wrote in Winnie the Pooh,
“How lucky am I to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.”
Thank you Lord, for a friendship so dear that loosing it is so hard.
Esther is not the only dear friend whom we have said goodbye to since Leah died, sometimes it’s hard to even process it all.
I’m so glad for the beautiful handmade little Christmas Tree that adorns our mantelpiece and reminds us of what a blessing Esther was in our lives.
I thank God for the many friends with whom He has blessed us on this journey – we couldn’t do this on our own.