With my Santa hat on, I run out to the car where the other young people are waiting for me. It is Sunday morning, and we are going to visit some of the older church members for a pre-Christmas “julebukk.” This is a new tradition in our home fellowship. (“Julebukk" is a Norwegian Christmas tradition, in which children dressed in disguises visit their neighbors, sing Christmas carols, and get Christmas treats.)
We have not brought much along with us: a poinsettia, a guitar, and a few songs we would like to sing to spread cheer among the elderly. In the midst of the busy Christmas season; with all the baking, washing, and gift buying; it is easy to forget that it often does not take much to warm someone’s heart.
Wherever we come, we meet happy, beaming seniors, who have all kept their inner-lives healthy, good, and pure. They share good words and encouragement with us; James 4:8, “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” Those we visit have clearly experienced this in their own lives, and we realize they want us to experience it as well.
It is very special for us young people to be with people like this. These older people pray for and think about us throughout their day – something that has eternal value and can be easy to forget in the busy hours of everyday life. These people have some great treasures that they eagerly want to share with us.
When we turn toward home after our little outing to bless others, we realize that we ourselves have been blessed, and it is our own hearts that have been warmed and filled with joy.