I LOVE the Christmas Season!
I love everything about or most everything. I love whatever is in the air - the first snow, the parties, the food, hearing O Holy Night at the candlelight Christmas Eve service... and people just seem to be in such a different mood - generous, giving... nice to each other.
When I married Serge, he promised me that I could buy a Christmas tree in Rwanda and didn't have to bring one. I did sort of threaten him that if I couldn't find a tree for our first Christmas, he would be in trouble. I well remember walking into T2000, a Chinese shop here in Kigali and seeing Christmas trees set up about 3 weeks before Christmas. Now this is a BIG deal as it was the first sign of Christmas I had seen. Christmas in Rwanda is pretty non existent. I'll never forget a few years ago walking into our largest supermarket here on Christmas Eve and they were just pulling deocrations out of boxes to sell. I just walked out shaking my head.
Here, Christmas is for children. You buy them sweets and little gifts but it has nothing to do with the adult world. Even church. Pastors may or may not preach a Christmas Sermon.
Each year my heart aches. My heart aches because without Christmas, without God sending his Son Jesus as a baby... where would we be?
As a family, we are determined to enjoy the season. The tree and other decorations went up this week. I heard there was a skiff of snow in Canada - so why not? The kids love it. As they were off putting up a string of lights in each of their rooms, the tears rolled down my cheers with memories of Christmas' past. l know I can't live there but must continue each year to make Christmas meaningful and relevent for our family here in Kigali. Serge assures me he likes our style!
New this year... two Christmas Carol parties - one for Rwandan family and friends and another for other expats. We`ll see how they go. I know the kids and I will enjoy preparing for them. Bring on the cookies!