Today was a very emotional day for many of us. We attended service this morning at the Muang Thai Church. It was exciting. The children of the church put on a performance of the gift of Jesus. It reminded us of our own silly children. We sang some familiar songs; Joy to the World, Santa is Coming to Town, We Wish You a Merry Christmas, and even Silent night. We all enjoyed the service so much but were especially moved during the singing of Silent night at 11:20 a.m., 11:20p.m. Indy time. The thought that all of you would soon be gathering to sing this song to celebrate the birth of Jesus came to mind. It was a bittersweet moment that brought tears. We miss you all and longed to hold you, sing with you, and simply be with you. But you were here with us. We felt the love you were sending us and were so thankful to share all of that love with our brothers and sisters here at the Muang Thai Church. They are all so kind, peaceful, and amiable. Their love of Christ shined today and we are so blessed to share this moment with them.
The Pastors really appreciated the gift we had brought with us, made by the Aaron and Kiyomi. We presented it to them as a gift of our friendship and life together through Christ. Susan spoke beautifully of Englewood and how delighted we are to build a relationship with them.
After church and eating a wonderful meal (The food here is fantastic!) we hurried our way upstairs to prepare for the Christmas party with Andy's students. There was a star making craft, organized by Hillary. We played pin the star on the Christmas tree in which we blindfolded the children, spun them, and they had to place their star as closely to the top of the tree as they could. Also, we decorated cookies! Yumm. Andy had a fun Christmas gift game planned. He began this game by speaking to the children about why we give gifts. I wish I could tell you what he had said but unfortunately I don't speak Thai. After eating an American breakfast for dinner, we handed out the stockings that Helen Webb and Jenny Dickinson had made and the missions class had decorated. I wish you could have been here to see their excitement. They loved the cards that our Englewood kids had made for them! The children left soon after this and boy were we all exhausted. Jet lag is still taking its toll.
A while later, other missionary friends came to join us. We took this time to share gifts, eat birthday cake, and light the candles on the advent wreath, not specifically in that order. I wanted to take this time to share with you of how grateful I am that we are here to share this time with the May family. Andy made a comment that after being here for six years that this is the closest it has felt to Christmas. Wow. I have no words to let you know how that one sentence impacted us. This trip was absolutely worth it. If we can bring the love of Christ to them and share this moment, even if it be only for now and I pray that it is not, it is worth it. They needed this, we needed this. It is humbling to remember what this time is truly about. Giving and receiving love. Pure and simple. Friends, thank you for the love. The love for us, the May family, and for each other. God is love. Jesus is love. We are love. Love.
P.S. Make sure to take a look at our photos.
Also, we may not be able to post blogs for the next couple of days. We will be at the Beach! Wooohoooo. And may not have internet access. Blogs will be written, but not posted until we return to Bangkok.