I spent last Saturday afternoon singing Christmas carols at the home of one of my childhood friends. Before I got carried away by the singing and before the memories of childhood came flooding in , I had to remind myself of the true meaning of Christmas. As a Christian I know that every family in heaven and on earth receives its free name from God the Father. God the Father sent his only Son to earth to change all those who believe in the Son into members of the holy family. So Christmas is about family, friends and focuses on loving, sharing and giving. A group of about seventy people consisting of the young and old sang the Christmas carols bringing the joyful Christmas spirit into our homes. With hearts filled with love and gratitude, we sang and embraced each other .We sang the traditional Christmas carols like Once in Royal David’s City and Silent Night and we the seniors among the group knew each song line by line! The kid in me just came alive as the treasured memories of the Christmas days celebrated in the past floated to the surface.
I could see myself singing the same Christmas carols as a teenager at home and at the Mayor’s gardens in Kampala. Many years later I was to sing the same Christmas carols in Cape Town botanical gardens at the foot of the Table Mountains. Irrespective of where I have had to join in the Christmas Carol Service , the switching on the Christmas tree lights always symbolizes the ushering in of the Christmas spirit into my home. It always brings in smiles, joy and love in my heart.
I cannot even begin to count how many Christmas cards I have had to write out and post early enough to be received by family and friends in time for Christmas all these years. The e-Christmas cards have been around for a while and I sometimes find them convenient and fast but still I feel that a few special people need the traditional card signed by me. I cannot forget the time I spent with my siblings and later with my children decorating the Christmas tree. It gives me hope that someday, I shall be decorating one with my grandchildren.
Memories of the early morning church service where everyone sings cheerfully and with enthusiasm are greatly treasured .The family gathering that usually follows later, remains the cherry on the cake for many of us. The Christmas meal consisting of a variety of family favourite dishes are a constant reminder of a mother’s labor of love. Their smells and taste are safely stored in my memory too. Not forgetting the traditional Christmas fruit cake; moist and fruit laden. I have always tasted it with my eyes before biting into it!
Now that I have earned membership to the Senior citizens’ Club, it thrills me to see the young creating their own memories of this festive season. I know for sure that once such memories are created, they will be cherished forever.
Over time, I have learned to look out for the needy in my community so that I give and share the joy and peace of the season in my small way with them. I have been amazed by the difference it makes.
To anyone reading this post, I wish you a Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year. May God’s love, peace and joy remain in your heart throughout the year. We are blessed to bless others so go out and share this love, peace and joy throughout the New Year.
May 2018 turn out to be your best year yet.