一反常態,好久3小在上學的路上沒那麼興奮了,特別是寒冷的冬天,每天早上叫他們起床,催他們上車上學總是像打仗一樣。原來,今天只上半天課,學校早上的聖誕禮拜後,接下來就是一連12天的聖誕假期,一直到新年。

Kids had not gotten so excited on the way to school for a while. Every cold winter morning, it was like in a battle to wake them up and push them to the school. Today they just had half day: after the carol service, immediately followed by the 12 no-school days till the New Year!

5分鐘的車程,B一直吵著還要這個禮物,要那個禮物,J和S也不遑示弱,加入陣容。其實早在幾個禮拜前他們就大肆宣告想要什麼聖誕禮物了,而他們夢想的禮物(其實只有S和B,J是被綁架的),我們這“現代孝子”也早在黑色禮拜五那天就幫他們“傳便”(台語)了。人的慾望就像是無底洞般,即使已經到手的禮物都還沒拆開,還沒享受,已汲汲計劃著下一個禮物。

During the short 5-minute commute to school, B kept asking for this and that as the bous gifts; of course J and S joined him. They announced their Christmas gifts weeks ago and eventually after "negociation", the pricy shared gift was prepared on the Black Friday and is now under the Christmas tree waiting to be opened. Greed is like the black whole, before they open it, they have already been seeking for the next gifts.

趁著還有2分鐘他們就要下車,趕緊問了他們一下,「這聖誕節到底是誰的生日啊?怎麼好像是你們的生日?」

2 more minutes before they got out, I asked them: "Who's birthday eventually are we celebrating for Christmas? It seems we were celebrating yours!"

「是主耶穌的...」

"It's Lord Jesus'..."

「那既然是主耶穌的生日,你們有沒有想過要送他什麼禮物啊?!」

"Well, if it is Jesus', have you parepared any gift for him?"

「可是要怎麼給他?」S立刻回答著(好像他已經想過這問題般)。

"How could I give him?" Answered S, as if he'd thought of this question already.

嗯,的確,要怎麼給?這問題實在難回答。

Hmm, tough question! How do we "hand" him a gift.

「呃,你們不一定要給主耶穌看得到的東西啊。就像說你們當個乖小孩,就是送給爸爸媽媽最好的禮物一樣啊。」

"Well, you are not necessary to give him a physical gift. Just like being a good kid is the best gift to daddy and mommy."

還來不及等到他們回答,學校到了,他們該下車了。不曉得他們會不會記住這個問題,有一天真正明白聖誕的真意。

Before they made any response, they had to get out. Not sure if they would keep pounding on this quesiton, realize the true meaning of Christmas.

此時一張卡片的影像出現在腦海中,是在美國的第一個聖誕節看到的一張樸實的卡片,沒有亮麗閃爍的圖案,只是一個小男孩抱著羊羔,望著天邊遠方的一顆明星,上頭寫著:

A picture appeared in my mind immediately... a card I saw during my first Christmas in the U.S. It was not a fancy, shining one; but a little boy holding a lamb, looking at a shining star far in the sky. Beside it wrote:

What can I give Him, poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb;
If I were a Wise Man, I would do my part;
Yet what I can I give Him: give my heart.

 

天父上帝已經將最珍貴最無價的禮物賜給了我們,我們能回報他什麼?

Heavenly Father has given us the most precious and priceless Gift. What can we give Him?

 

聖誕快樂新年蒙福

Marry Christmas and a Blessed New Year.

   (from Handel's Messiah, perforバッハ・コレギウム・ジャパン, 鈴木雅明) 

For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given, 
and the government shall be upon His shoulder; 
and his name shall be called 
Wonderful, Counsellor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace. 
(Isaiah 9:6)

因有一嬰孩為我們而生;有一子賜給我們。
政權必擔在他的肩頭上;
他名稱為
奇妙策士、全能的神、永在的父、和平的君。
(以賽亞書9:6)

 

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