Sunday, January 08, 2017

Finding Joy (Belated Christmas Day Post)

Handmade Christmas card received from Ivan Ho.
Today is the Feast Of The Epiphany, which also marks the end of Christmas. The gospel today is also an interesting one, talking about the quest of Magi where they are on a journey to follow the one and only star, which is the Messiah. You know, I used to not like singing 'We Three Kings' during caroling because I personally find the song quite sorrowful since it's slow and a little bit down haha. But now, I actually liked it a lot and reading the lyrics made me understand so much better about the three wise men and their longing/quest in following that particular star after all these years hahaha. Pope Francis explained it so well on how the Magi represent people like you and me, people who are lost, broken and is out there seeking God. Pope stated that, “Don’t give Jesus only your “spare time” or “some thought occasionally, like the Magi, let us set out, clothing ourselves in light, following the star of Jesus, adoring the Lord with our whole selves.” Couldn't agree more :)

Anyway, I was planning to post something on Christmas day but, I was too caught up with helping out with the wedding stuff when I was back in KK and I just didn't had the time to just sit and write down a proper post. So I guess today will be the day I'm doing it since it's back to reality for me already pffft. I know I do get excited on being able to be home to celebrate Christmas with my family and friends but, I gotta be honest and I know I've blogged about this before in year 2013 & 2014 about finding the joy of Christmas, but the thing is still so hard to find that 'joy' looking at my situation. One of the most important things in finding the joy for Christmas is when you are able to celebrate it with your family, together as a whole unified team. I have not felt like that for many years now and the sad thing is, I always need to find 'joy' out from my very own family. I mean, yes I do love celebrating Christmas with my cousins and best friends but it's a totally different feeling when you can celebrate it with with your own parents and siblings. That particular 'joy' is in my honest opinion, has already long gone. I think I was already holding down my tears the minute my parents came to fetch me at the airport on Christmas Eve. Our family car was in a mess, there was no effort to even make the house look Christmas-y and basically looking at my house situation, I might think it is slowly on the verge of collapsing, I'm not even kidding. I wasn't very happy about it and I was actually quite angry at that time, but the minute my mom said that she has to literally do almost everything by herself, my heart broke into a million pieces.  Not to sound like I'm exaggerating but oh man, I was asking God why am I feeling like this when I am about the to celebrate the most wonderful time of the year?

Longing for that kind of 'joy', I am not even sure when will I get to experience it again. I talked about this to my cousin Merl on Christmas Day, while we were busy hunting for wedding stuff. I guess she and her siblings are probably having a harder time than me because they've lost both their parents and it's definitely hard for them not to think about their parents during Christmas. But what we agreed upon was that, we just have to find joy from each other and I think we are just going to continue doing that in years to come. During the Christmas Eve mass, I was very surprised when the priest said that it was hard for him to feel the joy of Christmas even when the choir was singing the opening hymn about glorifying God to the highest. I was like, "Father, you don't feel the joy too?" But I think it was because of the pressure and stress that he must've felt since he had made a promise to the parishioners that the air conditioner for the Church was supposed to be installed few months back but it wasn't ready yet till now. Well, I don't blame him as I know that he's been doing a lot of things for the Church and also he had to take care of his health, which is more important. But being a good priest he is, even if he personally said that he did not felt the 'joy', he still managed to deliver a good homily that evening stating that Jesus was born for a reason and we should open our hearts and give him a chance to be inside because through him, is where we are able to find the 'joy' that we are looking for. Let Him work within our hearts, all we have to do is never lose faith in Him.

I think that's why Advent is such an important time to give us the time to not only reflect and reconcile but to me, it was like a challenge in finding the faith, hope, joy and peace in what we do, the people we are with as well as our surroundings. Maybe it is difficult for me to find that particular 'joy' that I wanted during Christmas, but I have to always remind myself to constantly be thankful that I am after all still with my family. I can pray for the 'hope' that one day, I will eventually feel the 'joy' of Christmas again. All I need is to continue to have 'faith' in Christ, always be patient in His timing and eventually learn to have 'peace' in my mind and also towards my own family. The true joy will come, in His time. I pray that God will not give up on my family, just yet. I hope you did had a wonderful and Blessed Christmas. Let's look forward to continue our journey to walk along the way of God's mercy and tenderness, as stated by Pope Francis :)

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