1st September. Today. Messages about Christmas start to flood my wall in FB. I start to have that nostalgic feeling that Christmas brings to one who is away from home. Nostalgic because of not being with family/loved ones in the Philippines; because of not being in the Philippines at Christmas time. There's really nothing like it. You can feel it, hear it, see it, live it.
What is 'it'? It's the spirit of Christmas, of celebration, of expectation. I just hope that it is the celebration of the coming of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ into this world as part of His plan for salvation. That it is an expectation of His second coming, which He promised before ascending to heaven. And His promises never fail.
At the same time, it is also a celebration of love. Because of love. Because He loved us first. Because He loves us with an everlasting love. So we have learned to love and be loved. It is a celebration with loved ones, near and far. For those abroad, going home at Christmas is one of the highlights of our lives. Months of preparation for some. But for others it could also be a spur of the moment decision, though the consequence would be a more expensive air fare and an unacceptable schedule. But no matter, if one really has to go home.
For those who can't go home, well we can show love to those around us. There are so many people needing love and kindness. We just need to look around. And if they ask why, we can share to them about Christmas, about love ... the language of Jesus.
Listening and especially singing along with Christmas songs, alone or with friends, surely can give us that great feeling of celebration. I would often do this, much better now with youtube and other media. But sometimes we could get sentimental while singing them, as memories of former Christmases flood our thoughts and hearts, recalling that wonderful feeling with loved ones as we celebrated Christmas many, many years ago. It's when the feeling of homesickness is also strong. Pulling at our heartstrings, and we could not do anything at first but to cry, and let it out. But a sort of peace comes after the release of tears...and we can be strong again, knowing that God has been faithful in taking care of us, and of our loved ones.
So this year, let us celebrate Christmas, with expectation of great things to come, and with open hearts to show love to everyone. Because the message of Christmas is hope, and love.
The youtube vdo below is an old one but it fully reflects what is in our minds and our hearts during Christmas...