We had just returned from the Nine lessons and carol program put together by St. Luke Anglican cathedral.
It was December 20th that year, and my family was glad to have my siblings and I around for the Christmas celebration.
The Archbishop of my Diocese was in attendance. It was he who delivered the sermon. He spoke about the true meaning of Christmas and went all the way to reiterate the fact that the Person who we were celebrating actually came to die for the world, so as to bring about everlasting life for mankind.
Mum was particularly glad to have all her kids and grandchildren around.
It was a regular ritual since I and my siblings began raising kids.
My mum had particularly demanded we all came back to town to celebrate Christmas as one big family. This Christmas was special.
As we all drove in a convoy returning from the carol service, something struck my mind..... The true meaning of Christmas. I must confess that for donkey years I had just seen Christmas as a period to fraternise with Friends and Family through eating and drinking alongside having a break from my tedious work schedule.
The Archbishop's words kept reoccurring in my mind..... the true meaning of Christmas and the need to reverence God in this period and beyond. My parents had earlier on decimated this information to everyone in my family when we were kids but I personally took it with levity basing all my attention on the miracles which my mama made for us as kids during Christmas period.
After about thirty five years of hearing the same sermon over and over, I finally got abreast with its true meaning.
The drive was quite fast and of course quiet for me due to my thoughts. My wife said some words which I Didn't take cognisance of, I only smiled and nodded to her words so as not to make her feel sad.
After a while, I got home to my Dad and Mum in company of my Siblings. My elder brothers and sisters didn't ask me questions despite seeing my outward disposition. I guess they felt I was old enough to handle any issue I had. If it were about thirty years ago they would have paid a little more attention to my facial countenance.
Four days later and it was Christmas eve. Dad asked me to lead the morning devotion using the devotional guide. As fate would have it, the topic bothered on the true meaning of Christmas. I was glad that at least I could get some of my thoughts out of my chest.
My face was brightened. I spoke extensively on the topic and got the whole family meditating on my words.
Even my nephews and niece's were somewhat quiet as though they understood my words. Maybe they did. I finally had peace of mind.
It's been quite some years since that episode and anytime I remember the occasion, I give thanks to Jesus who gave me the true meaning about his birth and has kept me and my family in his bosom.
It's 2016 and we are here again just a day to Christmas and I felt I should speak out once more about the birth of the One Man who changed the world in the true sense of the word.
Jesus is the reason for the season and all we do throughout this period and beyond should only bring glory to Jesus' name.
When we do this, we would truly experience Christ in his true form as the Lord of our lives and the only one who dishes out salvation for absolutely no price save his precious blood.
This period isn't all about eating, drinking and wearing new attire, rather it should be a period of caring and sharing with our neighbors. Christ has expressly stated who our neighbors are; all those who are in need and who we are privileged to render help to during this period and beyond.
Lend a helping hand during this period irrespective of the economic recession plaguing this nation.
It's a known fact that where there is someone to cry unto the lord, there is a God to respond.
You might just be the answer to someone's prayers this season. Don't relent in your goodwill to others cause by so doing, God has visited many a people and blessed their lives immeasurably.
Felicem Natalem Christi.