Tuesday, December 22, 2020
When I left work on Christmas Eve in 1983, the temperature was still twenty-eight below zero. I decided to go home and switch vehicles before going to the hospital to pick up my wife and our newborn son Joshua. I pulled the pickup close to the 1978 Ford Fairmont station wagon so I could hook up the jumper cables and get it started.
I let the car warm up for quite some time while I went in the house and called Denise at the hospital to arrange the timing of their discharge. I then called our friends to arrange for the delivery of our other children back to our home later that day.
When I arrived at the hospital I parked right by the front door and left the car running. I went upstairs and Denise was getting baby Josh ready for the cold weather. The nursing staff had provided a large red Christmas stocking and Josh was already inside it with just his face showing above the white cuff. Denise swaddled the stuffed stocking into a receiving blanket followed by a heavier baby quilt.
When we got to the front door, the blanket and quilt were folded down over Josh’s face to protect him from the cold wind. Denise handed the package to me as she walked gingerly to the car. After she was seated, I handed the package back to her.
If you have ever driven an older car in sub-zero temperatures and strong winds, you know that they never really warm up. As a result, Denise left Josh completely covered while we were in the car. We made our way from the east side of town to the far western side where our house was.
When I parked the car in the driveway, I went around to Denise’s side and opened the door. She handed me the package. I carefully helped her up from her seat and she held my arm as we walked up the steps to our home. We stood for a moment in the kitchen as we enjoyed the warmth coming up the basement stairs from the wood-burning stove in the family room.
I handed the package back to Denise after she removed her coat. I took my coat off, and began unfolding the quilt. A gasp escaped from my lungs. Denise looked shocked. We hurriedly turned the package over. During one of the package exchanges, Josh had been turned upside down. We quickly unwrapped him to discover that he was sound asleep. Only his parents were suffering.
Next time life seems upside down to you, remember the visual picture that was just created in your mind of an upside down baby all wrapped up in blankets inside a Christmas stocking, sleeping peacefully. Then remember the promise of Scripture in Philippians 4:7. “And the peace of God that surpasses passes all understanding will guard your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. Then just rest until God unwraps you.