12/12/2014

Christmas with Tammy

 

The idea of a Christmas party is more about a celebration of being together. It is about sharing in the joy of the upcoming celebration of the birth of Christ. But somehow, over the years, it has become so commercialized that it has become more about gift giving, eating well, and out shining each other with fancy Christmas wear.  

 

I am not saying any of that is all bad.  There is a place for having a frivolous party in the hectic pace of life, and some people in society need that.  There was a time in my life when I needed that.  In particular, when I was convinced I would live to a ripe age of 100.  Those were the days when I was young, carefree and death did not seem eminent.

 

The reality of my life today is focused more on the reason Jesus came to this world, on board so to speak.  Or is it, more to the point, why I came completely
on board never to ever want to look back?  Deepening my faith at a core level and truly understanding the purpose of what I am to do with his message has left an indelible footprint on my life.

 

Christmas is more than just a birth of a baby named Jesus in a manger.  His birth led to his death, at our hands and then to his resurrection for our saving grace.  

     Colossians 2:13When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins.

 

Attending a Christmas party with cancer survivors is unlike any other holiday party I have ever attended.  Please don’t think it was about cancer or that the disease was even discussed because it was never brought up. No one battling the disease that I consider a close friend defines their identity with the ‘c’ word. It is simply something they have, much as some folks have diabetes.  

 

A close friend of mine hosted this party at her home.  Her home was warm and
inviting and decorated beautifully.  It  had the wonderfully warm loving touch. I say this with added emphasis because many of the decorations were homemade, bought at Salvation Army places where others could profit from her hard earned dollars, or were items with a story behind them, from family, friends or those she had helped along the way.

 

Everyone in attendance is a survivor of some type of cancer.  Many do not realize that the word survivor denotes the individual has lived a day beyond 

the diagnosis. It does not mean the cancer is gone.  Thus, some of us are in remission, some present were not.   The commonality was everyone appreciates life and unlike so many in this world, all do not take things for granted nor carry hate and anger in their heart. It is indeed a loving group of Christian women to be circled around and love.  

 


This crowd is a different sort than most Christmas parties you will attend. No one was dressed in Christmas wear.  We all like it and love the spirit of having it but the money we have is more likely spent on giving gifts to family, friends, charities and others that are near and dear to us.  Our conversations   are not about materialistic things.  I have no idea what anyone wants for Christmas there, what the worst gift they ever got was, etc.  We focus more on the things that matter in life, our families, what is going on in our lives, because we never know for sure if we will be there for the next Christmas, the next day.   There are people present that have the disease growing; you cannot take your life for granted. I repeat, life is precious, grab those moments and use them wisely. We are not wasting what might be a last moment asking someone about something as insignificant as a gift.  We want to share laughter and hugs and build memories to last a lifetime with each other.

 

I say this not out of sorrow but to be honest, to be real.  Christmas is about honesty; Jesus came down to teach us about our Savior.  We needed to know this before we chose our path in life and die.  Our party participants know that death is surely going to happen just as surely as our birth.  We spend our time on the moments in life to treasure, thus our party is quiet loving moments, reflecting on what makes our lives special.  It is more of a purr in the room than shouting and yelling.  We prefer soft Christmas carols to loud boisterous bawdy Christmas music.  We laugh and we sigh with contentment over past memories.   We hug ourselves and each other over our good fortune to be together and the people in our lives to share our Christmas season with and feel blessed to be here another year.

 

I had committed to make a video of the pictures from our party. When I pulled the pictures together everyone had taken, I realized there was not a great deal of pictures to choose from.  I suppose that is understandable.  Our group is not about looking for a camera, not about posing, just about being together and the camaraderie. Hence, I pulled some images from some other Facebook friends pages to help complete the video. Hopefully you’ll enjoy those images also.  And those that are added will be flattered!  Click Here 4 Video


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