Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Luke 2:14 "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, goodwill toward men."

Merry Christmas everyone!! I cannot believe that this year is coming to an end and a new one is about to begin. It seems like just yesterday that my friend Ashley and I were celebrating New Years Eve dancing till almost dawn– and yet an entire year has passed. 

Christmas in Korea is literally foreign to me. For the first time in my life I am living somewhere where Christmas is not all consuming. Throughout my childhood I have been given some truly fantastic Christmases, (I'd like to add a very large thank you to my parents here for being so wonderful and creating a truly festive atmosphere in our home), the Christmas spirit has always been very strong in my life. As a missionary and being away from my family, especially in a country that is not predominately Christian, I have realized how much I adore the Christmas season. And I am missing it right now. I think the things that I miss the most are how it fosters a sense of togetherness, the way it opens opportunities for us to reflect on and remember the reason we are celebrating. I also miss the constant symbolism of the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ. 

Not spending the season in my “traditional” way has helped me think a little more about the true meaning of Christmas. Being a missionary has helped me recognize that it is a wonderful way to celebrate Christmas. While whining a little bit (okay maybe a bit more than a little bit), to my companion about how this Christmas just wasn't going to be the same without what I believed was the way to spend the holidays; she said something that made me pause and reassess how I viewed the days ahead. She said "For missionaries it's Christmas every day." Of course she is so right. Christmas is meant to celebrate the fact that Christ came into the world for us, that He loved us enough to be born in such lowly conditions, then live as a mortal man, and ultimately, and literally, lay down his own life for our salvation. That is why I am in Korea, to share this “Good News”. As a missionary I strive to remember this and to teach it every day, not just through my words, but through my actions too. So though my Christmas season might not be what I am used to (and if I am being honest, what I long for), I know it has the potential to be incredible. I know that as we all strive to remember Christ this Christmas we can make this year the best Christmas we've ever had. I add my testimony to others that are shared this Christmas–"Glory to God", for I know Jesus Christ is the literal Son of God on this earth, that he was born of a righteous virgin, and mortal woman, that he obeyed His fathers will and laid down His life for all mankind, and that through His atonement and resurrection I will be made whole and can live with my Father in Heaven again. I bear record of this through my testimony of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ, in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Love you all! 
Merry Christmas!
Sister Annie

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for giving a good reminder for the meaning of Christmas, we always need to think of Christ more and "celebrating" less. Your looking wonderful, mission life must agree with you. Hope all is well.