If you are anything like me, you start looking forward to Christmas on December 26. Boxing day and the day after my birthday, are the most depressing days for me because the anticipation and excitement is brought to a screeching halt and I have to wait a whole year to the next one…not fun! When these two days are approaching though, I can’t contain myself, especially Christmas :-).
There’s just something about Christmas… the joy, peace , hope and assurance that comes with it no matter my situation or what I am going through. I love the music, the lights, decorations, the Christmas movies and the food! It’s the best time of the year!
Christmas for me is not only about making-merry, giving and receiving gifts, it’s a time to reflect on how the Lord has seen me through the year, my successes and failures, answered prayers, unanswered prayers, accomplished goals, unaccomplished goals, new resolutions for the coming year and what I need to do better or differently in the coming year.
How Christmas looks like in DD’s World
I spend Christmas differently every year because I live far from home so I haven’t had a privilege to spend Christmas with my extended family in a while but my son comes every other year and It’s always a joy having him around for Christmas. I wish he could come every year but the circumstances don’t allow, so I spend Christmas with my family (friends) here in Belgium. This year, I was planning to spend it with my family in Zambia for once but my boss decided I was going to work because a few of my colleagues would be away, so again I won’t be home for Christmas but I hope to be there for Easter and Christmas next year, God willing. Don’t worry though, I don’t spend Christmas alone, my friends wouldn’t let me even if I tried :-).
When my son is here:
- We go Christmas shopping together
- I try to send out cards to my family and friends but I always send them out late, don’t ask me why lol.
- We also don’t miss out on Plaisirs D’hiver (the Winter Wonders) and Christmas market for some crepes and gluwein (mulled wine) and the Grand Place for ‘Les Nuits Electrabel’ Christmas Lights Show
- We decorate the Christmas tree together
- We go for the evening candlelight service on Christmas eve or a Christmas Day service on Christmas Day at IBC (International Baptist Church, Brussels)
- We have dinner at home, which is most likely to be Nshima then watch Christmas movies
- On Christmas morning, we exchange and open our presents and stay in and watch Christmas movies which he also loves. Home alone being one of his favs and mine is the Christmas shoes…which I watch I every year.
- The days after Christmas, we visit or meet up with friends…its the best time to catch up on what’s going on in each other’s lives, thank the Lord for His goodness to us and enjoy meals together before January comes with its craziness.
As you make plans for the holidays, just be mindful of people around you who may not be looking forward to Christmas…..Some people are not surrounded by large wonderful families and family, some are having problems during Christmas and may be overcome with great sadness when they remember the loved ones who are no longer with them. For many it is their first Christmas without a particular loved one and many others lost loved ones at this time. And, many people have no one to spend these times with and are overcome with loneliness. Say a little prayer for them or invite them over to join in the celebrations or volunteer at a homeless or refugee center. It’s a good time to show kindness in practical ways.
Enjoy your holidays but remember why you are celebrating Christmas and stay safe.
MERRY CHRISTMAS AND A BLESSED YEAR AHEAD!