Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas 2011 at the Harveys

Stockings at seven o'clock in the morning

Church at 9:30

Today our family was privileged to read the Bible passages to the congregation and light the last advent candle to represent Jesus, the Light of the world. Even Tirzah had a Bible verse to say!

Lunch at home with our friends the Sweeneys. (Thank you for sharing this special day with us and for all your contributions!)

Our menu for Christmas lunch:
新鮮麵包 l 意式沙律
火雞餡料 l 香滑薯蓉 l 甜甘芋 l 合時什菜
Sounds delicious, doesn't it?

I think there must have been some secret ingredient in the feast that made our children a little crazy!

After lunch the children enjoyed playing together, then Jemilla performed some mercifully short Christmas tunes on the recorder.

I love this remarkable lady! She is a great encouragement to me.

We farewelled the Sweeneys mid-afternoon, then the children were finally able to open their highly anticipated wrapped presents.

Lots of imaginative play toys for Tirzah

Keegan can hardly believe that he now owns a DS!

Jemilla is holding earrings from her friend Joelle and the new Colin Buchanan CD.

Craig is very happy with his Samsung Galaxy tablet.

Craig and I received lots of goodies for our 7:31 cupboard! And certain people can stop making fun of my ancient mobile phone because Craig bought me a flash new one.

The afternoon quickly passed with skype-ing, phone calls, and trying out the new toys.

I felt disturbed this week when I heard someone refer to Christmas as "the Disneyfication of Christianity." It stole some of my joy in this particular season we believers set aside to express gratitude to God for sending Jesus to earth. 

I am not denying that commercial exploitation of Christmas exists. It is very evident in Hong Kong in every shopping centre we pass. Look at these crazy, massive Christmas trees currently on display here. What do they actually have to do with Jesus and his birth?

But contemporary Christmas celebrations are not all bad! To put it simply, Christmas is what you make of it. For our family the focus is Jesus' we found on this MTR billboard.

This nativity scene tucked away behind Tai Po Market...

And hearing Tirzah's little voice sing "Away in a Manger".

Christmas is a time that is used for good by many. There is something about Christmas lights shining in the darkness that seems to stifle adults’ pessimism and soften their attitudes. It’s like we want to become more like the one whose birth we celebrate. The Bible says that "at the right time" someone important came into our world and gave his life for us so that we could have a relationship with God. So I say this is "the right time" to celebrate...not the trees or lights or gifts or food, but celebrate the fact that Jesus came. Our family enjoys all aspects of Christmas, but we remember what has really made the difference. Jesus came! What a cause for celebration! 


  1. Merry Merry my friend. So excited about your new phone. FINALLY!!!

    Love ya.


  2. Those patient kids deserve all those wonderful gifts! Getting a little teary eyed writing this.
    Thank You for inviting us over it made the day so special and meant so much to us. We love you Harvey family!

    The Sweeneys

  3. A beautiful description of what makes Christmas so special. Glad to see you had a wonderful day celebrating the birth of our Saviour and enjoying His many blessings.
    I loved our phone chat ...

  4. lovely! I had a little trouble reading the Christmas lunch menu though.