this past wednesday (november 30) was my 2nd sweet december celebration with my church folks. to me, this karen tradition is a sign that 1) winter has officially started 2) it is time to ponder on all the goodness of God and give thanks and 3) it is time to be in the spirit of christmas. 🙂
this year we met at church for meat and seafood barbecue and “meh to pee” (a treat of pounded steamed sticky rice with sesame). i arrived the church with my friend’s family at 7:00pm, starving. but, to my surprise, no one got anything going yet. no burning stove. no tables. no people. we looked at each other and wondered if we missed any change of plan communication. my friends and i piled out of the car and made our way to the church building, where a few others were quietly hanging out. when i spotted another friend from youth group, i went to greet her and sat down to chat.
in just a half and hour, though, it seemed like a whirlwind of joy swept over us. a moment after i sat down, guys started to bring tables and chairs in. when i looked again, i saw coals of red-amber colors burning underneath the stove. women began ladening the tables with trays and pots. the next moment i knew, the jolly feast has begun.
laughter filled the place. children shrieked as they ran around the hall, playing. the church ground was getting packed because other karen families from different churches arrived. after an hour of meandering nearby the grills, i was content enough to sit nearby one of the stoves, watching people and chatting with friends.
at 11:00pm, replacing the clattering of silverware, the buzzing noises of people talking and the shrieks of children were the clapping of hands, the singing of praise and the voices of saints praying. it was late at night and our eyes were heavy. but when we entered into His presence, at anytime of the day, the Lord was there. in our uncertainty, doubts and fear, God is there.
the Spirit reminded me that night that i need to fellowship with Him, to be intimate in my relationship with Him and to abide in Him everyday.
this month will be full of activities, i know. i will be caught up with work, people, projects and church. but one message from God is – fellowship with Him and everything will come to pass accordingly.