Friday, 16 December 2011

I Hate Christmas

Oh  no  its  not  me  but  Oscar  the  Grouch from  Sesame  Street who  is saying this.

Its funny , but poor  Oscar   is  partly  right.If  I  was  celebrating Christ' s  birth  in a  treadmill meaningless way I  would   hate  it   too.
Christmas  kept  as  a  frenzied  holiday  can  be  pretty  stressful. Just  a  rigmarole  of  tradition and  activity. A  lonely  time  for  singles,the  bereaved  and  those  separated  from  their  family  for  various  reasons.

Childhood  is   the  best  time  to  enjoy  Christmas. You  are  not  responsible  for anything -  just  enjoy  the fun which  older  people have  arranged  for  you.

I  remember  our  family  activity  around  Christmas  time.The  baking  of     traditional  Christmas  fruit cakes.  My  grandma  with  with  the  help  of maids  and  aunts prepared  special  goodies and  I  was  always  eager  to  sample  them  hot  off the  stove. The  tantalising  aroma  of   sweet  and  savoury  eatables   made  them  hard  to  resist. I  teased  my  grandma by  playfully  pinching  handfuls of  delights  from  loaded  brass   platters. She  was ready  for  my  naughtiness and  pretended  to  scold  me.

The  provender  and  cakes  were  stored  in  large  trunks waiting  for   guests  to  arrive. Family  and friends  would  visit  us (  and still  do )  during   Christmas  week  and after  and  were  served  Christmas  specialities   with  tea  and  cake. Sometimes  people  call before  they  visit  otherwise  one can  drop  in  anytime.

On  December 25th  we  attended  morning  church ,  and had   lunch  at home  .  There  were  lots  of   visitors  to  share  food  with. After  that we   set  off  to  visit  relatives   and  friends returning  late in  the  evening.

Gift exchange  was not  prevalent  among  adults  in  those  days (  as  it  is  now)  but   children  got  toys  and   money. I  always  wished  for   books. We  gave   away food  packages  ,  money  and  clothes  to   the  less  fortunate  and  our  helpers,   and  still  do   each  year.

Sending  cards  and  telegram  greetings  was  in  vogue,  but  in these  modern  times  it  has  been  replaced  by  emails, telephone  calls and  text  messages.

We got  our  Christmas clothes  ready. It  was  not  necessary  to  buy  new   clothes  each  year.

Decorating  the  house   was  fun with  everybody  giving  instructions  to  each  other. I,  being  the  family  clown teased  and  tackled  my  sisters  who  chided  me  with   indignation.

When  our  old  artificial  Christmas  tree  shed  all  its  leaves , Sonia  used  a  tall potted  fern  to  string  up  the  ornaments.  And  I  enjoyed  poking  fun  of  her "Desert  Christmas  tree".  Poor  Sonia still  remembers  that  levity.

There  were  lots  of   Christmas   music and  pageants to  attend  and  participate  in. (Tomorrow  we  are  having  a  Christmas  program  in  our   church  organised  by  the Believer 's  Church.)  And  weddings  too.  People  like  to  get  married  in  the  cool  season as  the  weather  is  pleasant. Oh  yes  there  were  picnics,  outings  and fairs  too.

Just  take  out  Christ  from  Christmas  and  what  do  you have  left just  a  holiday- something   for  the  body but  nothing  for  the  heart.

I  want  to  have  a vision  of the  glorified  Christ  this  Christmas.

St  Teresa  of Avila was  born   in 1515.She  was  a  great  Christian  mystic and  many  people  today   are  blessed  and  encouraged  by  her  writings. Once  she  tried  to  describe  her  vision  of  the  glorified   Christ.

"It  is  not  a  radiance which  dazzles, but  a soft  whiteness and  an  infused  radiance which, without  wearing  the  eyes causes  them  the  greatest  delight nor are they  wearied  of  the  brightness which  they  see  in  seeing  this  Divine  beauty...It   is a light which never  gives  place  to  light, and being always light is  disturbed  by   nothing."

I  wish  you  the  brightness  of   a  vision  of  the  glorified  Christ  this  Christmas.

5 Fertilize my soul:

Donetta said...

Good Morning old friend
You have been on my heart for days. Well sense Thanksgiving day even.Your doing well I trust. I am returning to my own heart after a lengthily time of fatigue and overwhelm. Simply the days are so full when a moment came free I just had nothing left. Forgive my the neglect of your heart.
A relative came forward and gave a gift of some money to get gifts and pay a bill or two. When I was out of work (as is being a homemaker) the cost all but exceeded the means. We had all we NEEDED and still do. I'll use some of the funds to get a top or two and a pair of shoes for the kids. It is a joy to get to do so. Our economy is so very hard here on so many. We rejoice in all that we have been so blessed with. So how delighted I am to get back into the word a bit and remember my heart. Literally we got just worn out. Were it not for a little help we might have fainted. Raising the kids on an island without the help of extended friends or family is a very hard way to raise special needs kids let a lone any child. God is making us able but the cost to our strength is high. Our strength is being renewed daily. Dash is on holiday from his online school so that gives a rest to me for two weeks. Oh this is what it is to have a dull moment :)

Felisol said...

Dear Amrita,
Thanks for introducing me to Teresa of Avila. Never met her on my journey, but she managed to describe meeting with Christ in a way not yet known to me.
It is my hope that I once shall meet him and see him as he is, according to his promises.
That will be even more indescribable.
Till then, let's keep on moving forwards, never loosing the sight of our common goal.
Yours Felisol

Miss said...

I agree with you Amrita.

People want to take the "Christ" out of Christmas, especially out here in the States. People say "Happy Holidas" more than "Merry Christmas", if they say anything at all.

My pastor was saying that there is alot of gloominess in the air. And alot of people out of work. But the problem is, Christmas has nothing to do with presents, but everything to do with Jesus.

And of course I appreciate you sharing with me your childhood. I'm sure I've said this before, but I think it's beautiful to know another Indian Christian out there. I can't remember if I asked you though, how did your family become Christians in a nation that is totally non-Christian?

I had a dream a few days ago about Indian Christian men praying for this one Indian man. I feel led to continue to pray for the nation of India now, not just one time, because I had one dream.

(Sorry for the long comment)

Thanks again for your always inspiring posts.

(By the way, I changed my blog address again, but hopefully you recognize me by my picture).


David C Brown said...

He is Lord of all!

JI said...

Nice to read about your Christmas experiences in years past.

Happy Christmas to you and your family.