A Birthday Celebration
by Danny A. Tariman
“When you host a dinner or a banquet, don’t invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors so you can be invited by them in return and get repaid. But when you host an elaborate meal, invite the poor… then you will be blessed” (Luke 14:12-14)
“Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday, Happy Birthday to you…”
Thus sang the 100 little children from a remote mountain village on our arrival at their school. They were all giggling and smiling. You can notice the joy in their faces.
We came to this village to celebrate our daughter’s birthday. It was her wish to celebrate her birthday with poor little kids.
Months before that eventful and blessed day, our daughter confided to us her this wish. She had saved money for this purpose. All that we did was to help her coordinate the logistics, the venue, and the preparation.
Our family bought and prepared the gifts for the kids in Manila, while the food was prepared by loyal friends who lived in that remote village.
And so, this is the day! This is indeed the day that the Lord has made, we rejoice and are glad!
We started the event with an opening prayer which was led by their school teacher.
Then we had party games – the “newspaper dance”, the “boat is sinking” game, and the longest line contest. I noticed that the older kids made some strategies on how to win the games, while the younger kids were just doing what they can. It was fun.
We were all sweating and tired. Yes! But we enjoyed more seeing the little children enjoy the games.
After all the excitement, we had our lunch of spaghetti and fried chicken which were prepared by some friends who shares our mission and our joy feeding these little kids.
This brought me to the Biblical teaching in Acts 20:35 “It is more blessed to give than to receive.”
After eating our lunch, we distributed the gift packs for each child – an envelop of school supplies, and a small bag of food items.
We thank the Lord for the opportunity to be a channel of His love and blessings for these kids. We thank Him for answered prayers, and we thank Him for the good weather too.
I claim God’s promise in Luke 14:14 “When you host a dinner… invite the poor… then you will be blessed”.