As I address the many Christmas cards we send to loved ones my hand cramps up and I need to take a break here and there. My hand isn’t used to maneuvering a pen for anything more than a quick note in my calendar. Most writing is done by computer or phone. Every year there is that temptation to skip the cards and enjoy a break. But then I remember how many greetings we receive back in the mail and know it is always worth the effort. In the past I tried to keep the list of addresses on the computer to make things quicker. It was really difficult to keep the list updated as I would not think to add to it or change addresses throughout the year.
I have not regretted my decision to go back to handwriting. As I am addressing each card I think about each person I am sending these greetings to. Memories come back. Some bring memories of childhood, some of a recent trip where we caught up on life, and some are new friends we have made on our journey. These warm feelings bring joy and remind me of the blessings of this simple task I am accomplishing. Soon the cards from others begin to arrive and increase each day. I am reminded a second time of these dear friends each time I sit down to enjoy all these cards.
Another tradition we began in recent years is bringing tidings of joy from door to door with Christmas carols. This brings joy not only to those who are receiving the carols but for us who are singing. We were on the receiving end when our baby was sick nine years ago and can not explain the amount of love we felt flowing into our home. Now, along with our children, we can bring that same joy into the home of another fellow traveler. It is always good to remember the elderly, lonely and suffering during this time of great celebration.
Christmas is quickly approaching and the temporal preparation is almost finished. Our kids will be home soon for winter break and we can slow down to celebrate Christ’s birth. The most important preparation is in our hearts, where we want to make room for Him throughout the year. This season of Christmas is a time to reflect on our greatest gift of faith and the many blessings we have received throughout the year. I pray we will keep this Christmas peace in our hearts each day of our lives and can continue in faith until the end.
Kansainvälisesti vertailtuna vakaassa ja turvallisessa isänmaassamme on ilmennyt ajattelua, jonka mukaan esivaltaa vastaan tulee taistella. Tällaisen ajattelun perustana on käsitys siitä, että suomalainen yhteiskunta ei toimi jäsentensä parhaaksi. Muualla läntisessä maailmassa on nähty jopa konkreettisia hyökkäyksiä yhteiskuntarauhaa vastaan.
Siionin Joulu on lehti joulun kristillistä sanomaa kaipaavalle. Lehti on värikäs, aikaansa heijastava. Hartauksien lisäksi siinä on haastatteluja eri puolilta maailmaa.
Lohdullisia ja riemullisia lauluja taivaasta Jämsän Kristillinen Kansanopiston kuoron laulamana.