Christmas Eve has always been an important day in my family. Since my very first Christmas, this is the night that everything is celebrated in my family. We watch Christmas movies, bake and decorate cookies, eat pizza (that is our traditional Christmas Eve dinner) and open presents.
I can't lie to my readers. I understand the true meaning of Christmas. I am endlessly thankful that God sent his only son to the world, to be born as an innocent and helpless baby to save all of us from death. I love God so much for that.
However, I am just as excited about the material parts of Christmas. I feel as excited as a five year old when it comes to crawling around under the tree to get presents to pass out to my family. I love watching my pile of presents growing bigger and bigger. I love watching my family open up the gifts that I put so much thought into buying for them. I love receiving things that I truly need and have been wanting for awhile.
While I will never dislike the part of Christmas that invovles opening presents, I have become more aware from year to year about what I ask for. This year is no different. My Christmas list included: Various sizes of envelopes to send things to my sponsored children, stickers (for the same reason), art supplies (for my class and for my sponsored children). I can't stop thinking of these beautiful children this season.
I'm thinking of Abu-Bakarr, my handsome young man from Sierra Leone. I'm hoping that he got the gift I sent him back in October. I wish I could have seen his face when he opened up that box with the soccer ball, the tennis shoes, and his new shirt. I pray that he knows how much God, and I, love him.
I'm thinking of Xhuliano, my newest kiddo, from Albania. I started sponsorsing him at the beginning of November. By now, I'm sure that he knows I'm his sponsor. Because he's older, at 11 years old, I'm sure he's had a sponsor, or multiple sponsors, before me. I don't know how much damage there is in his heart from people leaving him like that. I pray that he knows that I am never going to leave him. I am his sponsor until he ages out of the program. I've sent him many packages and letters in the last month and a half. I hope he receives some of them soon.
I'm thinking of Meena, my beautiful young woman from India. I know that her family is Hindu, but she told me that she knows the Lord. I pray that she knows the true meaning of this season, and that she doesn't let any local and cultural festivities bring her mind away from Jesus's birth. I can't wait to begin receving more letters from her.
I'm thinking of Eric, a wonderful man, from Uganda. I just started sponsoring him on December 13th, so there is a good chance that he doesn't even know I exist yet. I'm praying that God is washing love over him for the both of us, so that Eric feels safety, peace, and love this season.
I'm also thinking of Freily, that gorgeous and serious boy from Domincan Republic. I was only his correspondene sponsor for two months and I never received a single letter from him. I can't help but pray for him and whatever situation is occuring with him. Why did he disappear from my account? Is he sponsorless now? Is he scared of his future? I pray that God is with him.
So, there you have it, both of the views that I'm feeling this Christmas.