Christmas is friendship!
Christmas Dinner / Despidida at Congo Grill Tomas Morato. Jeje, we missed you!
...and being with people that make you feel cared for and special. When surrounded by true friends, it's just like having Christmas everyday!
Simbang Gabi started this morning. With barely two hours of sleep, my beau Alvin and I joined the rest of the BFQC community who were willing to wake up really early for the 4am mass. Alvin wanted us to catch the first four dawn masses before my flight to the US on Saturday. I love doing this tradition with him, so kahit puyat and pagod, go pa rin.
The Youth Choir sang beautifully this morning. There was a Christmas chill in the air. The church pews were all occupied by families, couples and friends. I couldn't help but feel quite sentimental. There was a strong feeling of positivity and togetherness among everyone gathered in the church this morning. I saw it as a manifestation of God's undying and unconditional love for us. After everything we've experienced this year - the recession, the calamities, the crimes, the hardships - here we were, healthy and alive and anticipating Christmas Day with joyful hearts. Because we know that despite the tragedies, God always gives us a reason to keep the faith. Families intact and hearing mass together, friends and neighbors greeting each other with smiles, couples holding hands. I remember glancing up at Alvin, and he smiled at me and planted a kiss on my forehead. The gift of love. The gift of family. God's blessings are overflowing. His presence ubiquitous.
After the mass, we had a picnic breakfast of puto bumbong and bibingka. I had a few minutes to spare before I drive to work for my 6am show, so we stood outside my house, eating with our fingers and sharing hushed laughter. It was the most perfect way to start the day. Makes you look forward to waking up super early again the next day.
Thank you, Lord, for this beautiful life. You are, indeed, so good.