This is a post about Christmas. Why am I posting about Christmas when it is already the 10th of January? Well, if you look at my new year’s resolution for 2009 and 2010, it was to “stop procrastinating”. Sadly, in 2011, I have failed again! 🙂
As regular viewers will have read, 2011 has kicked off at warp factor 5 and I am only now trying to reunite mind and body after the hyperspace jump. There! I hope that pseudo-scientific mumbo jumbo will somehow reverse the techionic field and presto………a Christmas post!
Normally, when I have let time slip by on a post idea, I usually let it go to sink into oblivion but this one’s special. I did something I hadn’t done for a long time at Christmas. I thought about someone other than myself.
I confess that for various reasons, I tend to like to spend Christmas alone; away from the noise and celebrations. For years, I have turned down invitations to Christmas parties in favour of a quiet night at home. In the same way, although going house to house caroling was something I enjoyed in my youth, I have not done so for years. Good grief, even as I type this, I am beginning to believe that I was turning into a Grinch.
Well, not this year! Oops, sorry. Last year! I joined a group from church to visit a children’s shelter. This 3 bedroom single storey link house houses 24 children from the ages of 6 months to 16 years old. Most are not orphans but were either abandoned or abused. Some were given up by their single mother parent because of poverty.
It was a fantastic experience. We sang Christmas carols, had our young storyteller tell the Christmas story, gave out presents (practical ones like water tumblers or shoes) and finally had a festive meal together. Everyone from church joined in the effort from the young kids, teenagers, working adults and seniors.
Even though we were there for only about 3 hours, some of us were able to relate with the shelter kids. It was also good to see some of the young people who come from privileged backgrounds also being able to reach out to these children at their level as real friends. Already some of them help out at this shelter from time to time.
You know, this was one of the best Christmases I have had in a very long time. The reason is that I looked beyond myself and my normal self-indulgent reverie at this time of the year and reclaimed the joy of telling others and sharing with others, “Joy to the World”. If you want a merry Christmas or indeed a wonderful life, don’t hang on to it but give of your life to others. Sermon ends.
All photos by LGS. Please note that this is pre-new camera and were taken on handphone. Hence the less than desirable quality of images.