Christmas, a devil tattoo, & the ICU

This year, our Christmas started off like any other Christmas morning.  Our kids woke up at 4:40am anxious to dive into their Christmas presents.  Sergio and I frantically opened up boxes, put in batteries, and played with each child.  At around 10am, we kicked cleaning & cooking into high gear to prepare for our dinner guests.

Oh, our sweet dinner guests.  Let me introduce them to you...

Our friends, "K" and "J", joined us tonight.  We have a deep respect for this couple and our kids absolutely adore them.

We also welcomed two homeless men, "J" & "D", into our home.  We've developed a strong relationship with both men over the past year.

Our final guests were the "L" family.  While eating at Moe's Restaurant one day, Sergio became acquainted with the manager, "E".  After talking for a little bit, Sergio invited his family over to our home for Christmas dinner.  My husband is amazing like that.  He can talk to a stranger and in a matter of minutes, they are friends.  I admire this about him.

When "E" and his family arrived at our home, I was curious about their story.  I immediately noticed on his neck a tattoo that stretched from his shoulder up to his ear.  His neck displayed a picture of a devil with the words "El Diablo" (devil in English) inked into his skin.

Our dinner began shortly after our guests arrived.  I sat at the table in silence.

I admired each guest sitting in my dining room.  For we are the "once was".

Let me explain that a little better.

Each one of us could say one of the following...

"I once was a drunk."

"I once was in prison."

"I once was addicted to porn."

"I once was an adulterer."

"I once was a harlot."

"I once was controlled by my anger."

"I once was a liar."

"I once was ruled by pleasing others."

The list can go on.  For we are a table of sinners; recovering addicts of deception. 

Shortly after our dinner ended, "D", experienced a series of seizures.  I watched my husband care for the 53 yr old, homeless man as if he were his own brother.  I watched "E" step up and genuinely help a man that he did not know.  And as I called 911, I watched "J" take all the kids upstairs to play until the paramedics carried "D" away.  

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. 
Rather, in humility value others above yourselves,
not looking to your own interests 
but each of you to the interests of the others. 
-Philippians 2:3-4

The evening is coming to a close and I sit here alone.  All our guests have left, the children are asleep, and Sergio is by "D's" side as he lies in the hands of the ICU doctors & nurses.  

And my mind drifts to Jesus. 

Oh, sweet Jesus, you know us all far too well.  
We most certainly resemble those that are listed in your own genealogy.  
For we are sinners in need of you, Emmanuel.  
Come, Lord Jesus, Come.