Robert & Roberta Adair




Stories from Robert & Roberta Adair


Last night I went caroling with a few people from the church.  I went because caroling on Christmas Eve sounded dandy.  Singing a hearty alto to Silent Night, Joy to the World, and O Come All Ye Faithful (in Japanese) was grand fun.  And the promise of curry rice afterwards also was tempting.

I’ve driven through these neighborhoods many times, although I have never visited these families (all helped by Samaritan’s Purse volunteers).  I’ve also never seen it at night.  During the day, the massive garbage dump with tsunami debris is visible as are the foundations of hundreds of homes.  At night, though, despite limited visibility, it felt so empty, so barren, so lonely.

We sang at 12 or so homes – all but one were home (but the cat seemed to enjoy the joyful noise).  I’m quite sure it was the first time any of them experienced caroling, but they seemed to enjoy the visit and gift (and appreciated the explanation of what we were doing, too:).  It’s been nearly 20 months since the tsunami, and a lot of work is being done.  Yet it is still very sabishi (lonely, sad) for both the displaced and people who are rebuilding their homes and lives.

It was a strange mixture of joy and pain.  We saw the beauty of snow (yay!) and real loneliness on peoples’ faces.  We saw the gorgeous, calm ocean and also saw how high the wave came (2 homes on hills were all that was left of dozens of homes in a neighborhood – and even they had water come up to the ceiling of the first floor).  We sang of “joy to the world” and “all is calm, all is bright” – but we also sang of a Christ who came in the midst of the slaughter of Hebrew baby boys, an oppressive government, and poverty.

Emmanuel – God with us.  I need Christ.  We need Christ.  People who we visited last night need Christ.  This isn’t as sentimental of a Christmas as perhaps I want (I – ahem – pretty much love cheesy, innocent, jolly Christmas), but I think it’s the most I’ve felt a desperation for His presence.

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