The Greatest Gift of All – My Christmas Message

Only 3 more sleeps until Christmas!

I remember all my years of counting down the sleeps in anticipation of waking up on Christmas morning, running to the tree and ripping open my presents.  I adore Christmas!  Always have.  No matter how old I am, the child in me wakes up and dances joyously.

Except this year Christmas came early.  And it has been the best Christmas in all of my 44 years.

It all started on the 13th of July 2016 when I walked into my now favorite local cafe, Fools of Desire in Rangiora, to meet Larina Kay Tiffen for her free coaching session.  Little did I know at the time that I was the one receiving the true gift as I was about to meet a real life angel.

In the past few months I have witnessed this woman embrace her gifts and her purpose and growing from strength to strength.  This lady is larger than life and she warms hearts wherever she goes with her fire burning brightly.  Her mission: to bring hope and love to those left behind in the ruins of natural disasters.

It is this passion that has seen The Miss Lilly’s Angels Trust come to life following the havoc wreaked by Mother Earth on the community of Kaikoura last month.  Here’s a woman who started a revolution – opening hearts to donate whatever they could, who never took no for an answer, and who got water, nappies, food and whatever was needed to people cut off from the rest of the world whilst others were still trying to untie their hands from the red tape so prevalent in our societal institutions.

Yesterday my life was further blessed with the opportunity to be a part of the The Miss Lilly’s Angels team.

After a restless night with little sleep from excitement, my alarm went off at 2 am.  There was just enough time for coffee, journaling and a quick shower before heading off to Kaikoura where we would hand out care packages and gifts to complete strangers.  I can only imagine the terror felt throughout the night with all the events that took place.  These are people whose lives are still reeling with the after-effects of the quake and tsunami.  From the outside it looks like everything is back to normal – the landscape still breathtaking and the sun gently warming your skin.  Yet behind closed doors these are mothers and fathers who find themselves in a state of fear and uncertainty of their future prospects.

For the smallest amount of time we got to bring a smile to their faces.  I simply cannot begin to describe to you the joy I received every time I hugged a complete stranger with my heart bursting with love.  They didn’t need to know my name or my profession or where I live or how much I have in my bank account.  None of that mattered.  All that mattered was love.

I am so grateful for a year that has brought new perspective into my life.  A year that reminded me of what really matters to me.  A year of meeting friends who are just amazing beyond words.  A year that has seen my family showered with blessings and my boys thriving.  A year when I was reminded of the true meaning of love and contribution.

Thank you Lilly for being my angel in so many ways.  Thank you for reminding me of the power of love and how much contribution can heal our world.

Most of all Lilly, thank you for being my friend.

Miss Lilly reminds me of the questions “If not me, then who?  If not now, then when?”  May her example inspire all of us to take a stand for the change we desire to see in the world and move us beyond our comfort zones to become that change.

With all my heart,

Anel

Find our more about this amazing woman at www.misslillys.co.nz and keep a look out for more information on her trust.