Monday, December 2, 2013

Amazing Grace

Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me.
John Newton (1725-1807)

It took about 4 hours to get all those decorations up!
Last Saturday, the song above was played beautifully by a cellist and a violinist during a Talent Show. Although they were high school students at the school, they played it so well that by the time they got to the last chord, some people had tears in their eyes. For me, the music made me remember the happenings of the day. In the morning, I had volunteers come to the school to decorate it for “Christmas in the Park” (CITP). CITP is an outreach to the Thai neighbours in our community so that they’ll know about the God we celebrate. It’s also the event to bless all of us who celebrate Christmas. A very small fraction of Thais know what Christmas is about so they don’t do anything to celebrate it. CITP is a community event where the true meaning of Christmas is looked at. The place is decked up for the season, carols are played, baked goods are shared, hot cocoa drank, and folks come because the Christmas spirit is there. I can still remember our first Christmas, here. The neighborhood looked dismal and there was no sign of Christmas anywhere. When the first CITP was held seven years ago, I was so thrilled! We attended it and sang and heard carols publicly for the first time!

These girls had way too much fun!
This year, as part of my new job, I’m coordinating the event so I’m learning about the amount of hard work involved in putting it together. With it just less than two weeks away, there are still LOTS of work to do! Decorating the building is a major part of the work. I didn’t know how we could pull it off but we did! I credit God for it. He’s so amazingly GOOD!

For starters, the day was overcast so we were able to work without wilting in the sun. Then, an unusual yellow and blue colored butterfly hovered and flitted about while we worked. It almost looked like God was checking out the progress of our decorating efforts and giving encouraging thumbs up to each of us.

As the volunteers arrived, I assigned them in teams and each one just took to the task at hand. I asked for a painter to touch up the paint of the Nativity figures and one person actually volunteered and did her work for four straight hours! She only stopped for a short break and was immediately back to work. She even beamed in the end about how much she enjoyed her time! It was amazing! Best of all, she did a great job! I was going to order a replacement for two figures that were torn in half but she taped them up, painted over the tape, and it looked really good when she got done!

When we finished, the rays of sun came down. =)
Eng, Eli, and Ethan, all helped, as well, and they did fabulously. They were my only men so they did the wiring, carrying, hammering, installing, etc. Afterwards, Eng said he enjoyed the work he did. They attached the words “Merry Christmas” on top of the building and it can now be seen by the whole neighborhood. The whole morning was such a testament to the Lord’s goodness and faithfulness. =) He is so amazing.
By past noon, the decoration job was completed just as the very hot sun came out. More importantly, I still have energy for two more weeks of hard work to get the event to happen. Judging from the way the Lord’s been blessing us, it’ll be a glorious time. I am looking forward to it. =)

The shepherd with a staff broke in half but you
could hardly tell after it was painted 

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