Merry Christmas!

I officially survived my first holiday season away from home. Dustin is a pro at being away from family at the holidays since he was either playing football or living in Africa most of his adult life. (who knew every holiday season I was tuning into my future husband’s football games?) I had a harder time at Thanksgiving than I did at Christmas. Of course Dustin missed his family, but he knows how to cope better than I do. I started talking about what my mom cooks on Christmas morning and I started crying. Monkey bread will do that to you! If you know what monkey bread is you would cry, too.

Despite being away from friends and family, we had an awesome holiday! Our flatmates family invited us over for a lovely “bar-b” out in the sun on their patio. We all drew a name and found an organization that the person was passionate about and donated a gift in their name. It was a really great idea! Another great idea that I have to give FULL 100% credit to Emma – it’s something we want to incorporate it into our yearly Christmas tradition. (It’s fun starting our own “family” traditions and we have learned a few things here that we plan on taking back with us.) The morning of Christmas, Dustin and I woke up to see the sunrise on the beach. The symbolism of anticipating the sun to rise is much like the anticipation of the arrival of Jesus entering the world. Jesus gives light to the world and what a great way to experience that in Nelson! We want to make that a tradition with our family – anticipating the arrival of our light into the world instead of the arrival of gifts from Santa. We will still celebrate traditional Christmas gifts but will emphasize the importance of Christmas as Jesus being born as our Savior! It was a really cool moment, listening to Christmas and worship music waiting for the light to take over the darkness. Thanks Emma for that awesome idea!

“…Long lay the world in sin and error pining

Til he appeared and the soul felt its worth.

A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices!

For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn!

Fall on your knees, oh hear the angel voices!

Oh night divine, oh night when Christ was born.”

“God sent a man, John the Baptist, to tell about the light so that everyone might believe because of his testimony. John himself was not the light; he was simply a witness to tell about the light. The one who is the true light, who gives light to everyone, was coming into the world.” John 1:6-9

“The Lord is my light and my salvation – whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life – of whom shall I be afraid?” Psalm 27:1

“For you have delivered me from death and my feet from stumbling, that I may walk before God in the light of life.” Psalm 56:13

We hope your Christmas was filled with love, joy, peace, yummy food and LIGHT!

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