long lay the world in sin and error pining
til He appeared and the soul felt it's worth.
a thrill of hope the weary world rejoices
for yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.
i love this song. today we celebrate the birth and life of our Savior, Jesus. when Jesus came, the world was waiting for the Messiah, longing for political and spiritual redemption. the world was in sin and error... until HE appeared. there was hope and the weariness of the world turned to rejoicing... because the promises of old were being fulfilled in Jesus Christ. it's amazing to think about it.
mary, our daughter, is really into the christmas story this year. like really into it! she watches a video about it most mornings after she wakes up and carries "baby Jesus" around all day. i often hear her saying things like this, as she gazes into baby Jesus' eyes...
"do you know who you are? your name is Jesus. you're here at last."
"you are Christ the Lord. you're here, you're really here!"
we've been laughing a lot at her during this time and saying, "what did you just say?!?" these quotes are from her video but as i hear her little voice say them in total excitement and amazement it reminds me of the emotions that Mary and the people of God must have felt when Jesus came. "He's here at last!" they were waiting, knowing that the Messiah was their only hope. today, we celebrate that God came to earth as a child as our Messiah so that we could be reconciled to God. but, this also reminds of me of the longing that should be in our hearts everyday. we are waiting too, for the second coming of Jesus. another line from that song is as follows...
chains shall He break 'cause the slave is our brother
and in His name, all oppression shall cease.
that is what we are waiting for now. i long for the day that Jesus comes back. i long for it because oppression will cease, there will be no hunger, tears, or loneliness. the world is broken and weary. we may not feel it everyday but some people do. but, when Jesus comes back all will be restored. His people will be in families, bellies will be full, addiction will be defeated, relationships will be reconciled... and we will be with God. i want to wait in eager expectation so that when Jesus comes back i can say "you're here at last!"
so, that is what we celebrate and think on today. but, we can't really capture that on a camera... so here are the highlights from our christmas. :)
we start by going to a Christmas Eve service. i'm pretty sure they were singing "O Holy Night"... i mean, look at those singing mouths!
then we go home and read the story of Jesus' birth from our kid's Bible, sing a few Christmas hymns together and watch a few key minutes of the "Navity Story" (a movie i highly recommend but not so much for little kids). kim, leslie and faith joined us for all of our Christmas festivities this year... though there are few pictures to prove it.
the next morning we woke up and opened a few gifts... good times!
faith brought her new latte maker over to make gingerbread lattes! :) she was lovingly staring at the new machine.
and then we played with some of our new toys!
and we can't forget this special gift that came all of the way from sudan... the green reindeer!
luke is gracefully trying to get off the reindeer :)
we did a few other fun things that are not documented by photos. well, danny was actually sick all day so he was in bed almost the entire day (sad!)... but the rest of us stayed busy. the marcus family came over for a yummy brunch, including bacon and apple pie. a friend of mine has a kids' home here (like an orphanage)... people from our church community here were matched up with kids to buy them Christmas gifts. they hosted an open house so we got to give our gifts to the kids and hang out for a bit. it was a nice time. then, we ended the night with dinner together and skyping family in America. :)
we really miss our family back in the states, i especially did this year. we had a wonderful day and are thankful for the simplicity of Christmas in Indonesia. we are also so thankful that we get to celebrate the birth of our Savior today! but every once in awhile i wish the flights to America cost $17 and took 1 hour. we may have been there for a few days this month. :)