We are in the depths of November and approaching the darkest time of year. November is often rather grey and if the sun does happen to appear, one must drop what they are doing and run outside if at all possible, and catch a few fast escaping rays. Maybe that is the reason why Finns seem to almost never sleep in the summer; there is a need to take in as much light as possible as the other half of the year is so much darker. It is not an unusual sight to see someone rowing a boat at 3 am, in the stillness of the summer night. The sky is painted in pastels and the birds are singing a nocturnal concert. It is one of the things that make the Nordic countries so special, the very distinct seasons each with their own raw beauty.
In the darkest part of the year comes a hidden blessing. It is as if it encourages us to slow down, gives us permission to perhaps read the long unfinished book or erase some of the hectic errands of the dark evening and just focus on the moment with our close ones. And with the new surge of Corona virus around the world, more of us are staying home. That means that some of us are feeling more lonely and others who are used to going at all times need to practice being in one place. And in the household with many people, the decibels tend to rise and the house seems a bit small. This time poses challenges for us all.
As we live through the end of fall and approach the Christmas season, my husband needs to be gone for work. My children and I have found a few methods in finding the joy in the long dark days. It usually starts right around All Saints’ day, when we have our first pikkujoulu, or Little Christmas. The lights are dimmed and candles are lit and music is softly playing in the background. All of the children help clean up the general areas as they know what is coming. Sometimes is as simple as some popcorn and a fire in the fireplace and a board game, and at other times it may be more elaborate with the table set with crystal goblets filled with a creamy dessert. In the end, it is about making time to spend together. At times we will have our little family parties when dad arrives and has the opportunity to spend a little time with us. This year as physical get-togethers are limited, it seems that these moments with the ones nearest to us have even more significance.
We have these little family Christmas parties up until Christmas with irregular regularity. They help carry us through the darkness towards the celebration of light, promise and hope. Christmas.
Text: Laila Uljas
Translation: Sirkka-Liisa Leinonen
You will find the original blog post here.
Helmikuussa tuli kuluneeksi 90 vuotta siitä, kun SRK julkaisi ensimmäisen varsinaisen Lasten Siioni -lehden numeron. Sen näytelehti oli ilmestynyt edellisen vuoden loppupuolella. Tarvitaanko kristillistä lastenlehteä edelleen, ja mikä sen merkitys on?
Kirjoittajat eri puolilta maailmaa kertovat siitä, kuinka Jumala on johdattanut heidät valtakuntaansa. Kertomuksia yhdistää kokemus kotiinpaluusta, Raamatun mukaisen uskon löytymisestä ja uskovaisten välisestä rakkaudesta.
SRK:n vuosikirja 2020 kuvaa monipuolisesti aikamme ilmiöitä ja osallisuuden tuomaa siunausta. Se muistuttaa, että Jumala pitää omistaan huolen myös monien uhkakuvien maailmassa.