Well aside from failing to continue the “Christmas theme blogging”, I also have neglected to write much of anything lately.
So the big question:
“How was your Christmas?” – The short answer is that is was both good and difficult, as to be expected when one is away from “home” for Christmas. The medium to Large answer: I feel like I enjoyed the season as a whole, but when the actual day of Christmas came around, emotions become overwhelming. I wished nothing more but to be with my family. I wanted to be with my family Christmas Eve; to go to the Christmas Eve service at my home church. I wanted to come back to my house and sit in front of the fire while drinking Hot Chocolate with the Christmas Tree glittering in my peripheral. I wanted to flip aimlessly through the channels and even come across the news channel and watch “The Santa Tracker”(as to rekindle childhood memories). I wanted to shake presents with my siblings, listen to Amy Grant Christmas, play games, eat stuff that I would regret the next day, lay on the couch and just relax. I wanted to be at home. And then on Christmas Day, I wanted to wake up at the crack of dawn only to be told that we would not open presents for another 2 hours. I wanted to drink coffee, eat my moms breakfast casserole, shake out my stocking and look outside and see the snow gently covering the driveway. I wanted to stay in my comfortable pajamas all day, Skype my dad and grandpa in New Mexico and open presents over skype with them. I wanted to do what my sister and I traditionally do every Christmas (Watch the OC), I wanted to try on new clothes, take a nap and then at the end of the day, watch a movie or play a game with my family.
Instead, on Christmas Eve I went Christmas Caroling with some friends and then went to a friend’s house and played games. I came back to my house, Skyped my family and then fell asleep while watching Christmas Vacation. On Christmas Day I woke up, Skyped my family, opened a few presents that they sent to me (I decided to save some for later that evening) and then went to meet some people for Christmas breakfast. I then came back home, Skyped my family again (homesick much?) drank some delicious hot coffee, watched another Christmas movie, put my comfy pajamas back on, drank more coffee and then went to another friends house for Christmas Dinner. I then came back home, Skyped my family AGAIN (Because it was now actually Christmas day for them) opened the rest of my presents and then went to bed.
Now… where does one go from here, in continuing to write this blog? If someone had the choice between which Christmas would be “better”, I’m convinced that many would choose the former, I know I would. However, that being said my point is not to compare which one would be better. Everyone knows that comparison is crippling and that in doing so, we are just harming ourselves and possibly even refusing to appreciate the beauty in the present acquirement.
The truth: Being overseas for Christmas is really hard. There definitely is a cost to count in being a missionary. A friend of mine said the other day as we were talking about how hard it is to be away from home on Christmas, “Missing stuff like Christmas, makes me think…I have GOT to make this worth it. I have to pour myself into the people here, into life here because if not, then whats the point”
The truth: In being overseas and away from family for Christmas, I have experienced the grace, love, comfort and peace of God that I was not expecting. It has caused me to see people differently, to love people deeply and to serve people unselfishly.
The truth: I am blessed to come from a family that supports my decision to be a missionary and who encourages me in this journey.
The truth: I am blessed to have a home church and friends that encourage me when I get discouraged and who pray for me faithfully and support me regularly.
The truth: I am blessed to be a part of the YWAM base here in Taiwan, where I am constantly surrounded by amazing men and women of God who have a heart for the Taiwanese people and who spur each other on in godliness.
The truth: I am blessed to live in a house that is “home-y”, to have access to familiar things like Panteen Pro-V and Lawrys seasoning salt. I am blessed to have warm covers during the current damp, cold winter, and I am blessed to have hot water (sometimes unbearingly scorching)
The truth: I am blessed to have the opportunity to go to Chinese Class 4 days a week and learn Chinese so that I can invest in and share Jesus with the Taiwanese people.
The truth: Though I am away from home, my true home is with Jesus and it is in this, that I know I can take great comfort and encouragement.
The truth: There will be many more Christmas’ to come.
The truth: It doesn’t matter which Christmas would be “better” because no matter what, Jesus is worthy.
The truth: Christmas is about Jesus, not about my comfort and not about my moms kickin’ Breakfast casserole.
So…. all of this to say, thank you for reading my blog about Christmas! I’m convinced it helped me process my thoughts on this Christmas. So, if anything I enjoyed writing down my thoughts. It definitely isn’t the most eloquent thing I’ve ever written, but it’s honest nonetheless. Alright, bless you guys as you continue to celebrate the Holidays with New Years comin’ up! Until next time:)
(my family sent me this awesome monkey stocking filled with all kinds of goodies! Also, when you press the monkeys hand, his hat and face light up and sway back and forth…and…HE SINGS!! Very cool, thanks fam!!)