Christmas Shorts

By: Justine Johnson

For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.”—Isaiah 55:9

December tends to be a cold month in Iowa. This year has been rather unusual; we have had sixty degree weather mixed in with the thirty degree stuff. Being the strange person that I am, I have been sleeping in shorts most nights this month. Coming home on break didn’t change that at all. But this morning I woke up to a chilly room and freezing bare feet; I had clearly forgotten how cool my bedroom gets when the south wind blows. Adjusting back to home life—and home temperature—always seems to be a struggle for me.

It’s that time again…the time that most college students have been counting down to since Thanksgiving or even midterm. Christmas break has arrived for the majority of universities and colleges. No matter what type of climate you have been living in for the past five months, home probably sounds ten times better than a dorm room.

I’m a freshman this year—this is my first winter break. If I was perfectly honest with myself, though, I would have to admit that I have been a bit homesick for college life off and on since coming home. Now, don’t think that I’m unhappy here. I love being with my family for more than a short weekend at a time. But adjusting to the old way of life has been a bit tricky. I’ll only be able to sleep late for a certain number of mornings before the lack of structure drives me crazy.

If you are in the same situation I am, everyone has been carrying on just fine without you for quite a while now. Our families love to have us home, but they’ve gotten used to us being gone all the time. Either they have built new schedules or we have simply forgotten what our old ones used to look like. It isn’t just catching up since we last talked…it’s trying to fit into a mold that we have been stretched out of.

There’s a good reason why we don’t fit in that mold anymore. As Christians, we are supposed to grow and be formed into new shapes all the time. If we didn’t, our faith would be lifeless and our life would be pointless. What use would we be to God if we tried to morph into our old selves again?

Maybe Christmas break should be a reminder to all of us that the old mold is being scrapped for a newer, more accommodating one. Allowing God to form the fresh structure of what we look like is a little terrifying sometimes, but that’s okay. What does your new model look like? I’m not quite sure about mine yet, but I do know it includes shorts in December.

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2 thoughts on “Christmas Shorts

  1. Totally know what you mean about coming home and finding out that nothing’s the same anymore. It was the weirdest feeling when I went home for Christmas break my freshman year. But you’re right, change is good. And I like how you related it to being open to letting God change us, as well. Just like new schedules stretch us, so does He stretch us. As someone who is a very routine-oriented person, I see the link between these ideas. Thanks for writing.

    • Exactly. It’s been really difficult dealing with homesickness for school when most of the people I live with made it clear that they wouldn’t be missing me a bit over break. Kinda makes me feel as if I can’t go back in January and say, “I miss all of you so much!” because they obviously didn’t think about school much while they were home.

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