Caffeinated Christmas

It’s past 3 am and I’m still awake. Been tossing and turning in bed because sleep decided to snob me at this unholy hour. I don’t have anybody to blame but caffeine. I overshot my quota today with my consumption of gallonfuls of tea (warm and iced), Rootbeer, Coke, Iced Coffee, plus chocolate bar, chocolate cake, coffee cake, ad infinitum. Identifying the caffeine culprits is making me realize, “No wonder I’m still up, alert and ready to join a triathlon!”

Oh-kay, I give up! Instead of facing the mounting frustration of sleeplessness, how about do something productive that will take my head off my pillow and my mind off my problem? Write. Right.


I have many things to thank God for this year. To answer a friend’s question about new learnings, I replied: “I think I have become wiser.” Setbacks do not throw me off in the same way as before. Sure, I am still melancholic me but I am not as hard on myself now. After a major fall or a big disappointment, I am feeling better and better equipped to move on.

No, I do not mean this to post to be self-congratulatory in any way. It is just that I want to remind myself through this essay—this will be good to remember one, two, or even ten years from now—what my experiences have thus taught me at this stage in my life. There might be some people who think that I am still  lacking in some areas (asking questions like, “Why aren’t you married? Too choosy?”) but really, regardless of my unchanged civil status, this has been a great year. God has been surprising me with unexpected blessings and undeserved favors that come in many forms.

If there’s one thing I would never tire of bragging about, it is this: How wonderfully awesome and loving and kind and powerful God is. And I could go on and on, like the energizer bunny that kept on banging the  cymbals. I have been reminding myself that I will give no one—not a pessimist, or a chronic complainer, or the chronicler of “bad luck”—the power to make me feel less grateful to God. Nobody can and should lead me to say, “God, You’re kinda stingy. Or maybe You forgot about me.”

If He can keep the stars in place in the sky, should I have any reason to believe that He cannot take care of me? That will be like doubting if Michelangelo can draw an apple, or wondering if Shakespeare can spell “dog, ” or if Bill Gates can turn on a computer. Absurd, right?

If Christianity is a crutch, as some atheists claim, then let me say that everyone, with no exception, is born with a broken set of legs. And boy, do I feel relieved that I need not go on limping by my own strength anymore.(Could this be why we Christians use the term “walking with God” to describe a vibrant, ongoing relationship with a real and personal deity? Maybe.)


It is now half an hour past 4 am, and I am still feeling the caffeine running through my veins. In a couple of hours (when the sun says hello), the palpitations and the jitters should subside and insomnia will have to say goodbye. But something inside tells me that it’s good that I have stayed up. This caffeinated Christmas, I realize that some truths infinitely stronger than tea, or cola, or coffee are actually making me feel most alive and awake—the ever-increasing realization that God loves me. And that I did not have to do anything to deserve to be loved. And that I love Him back.

We love because He first loved us. (1 John 4:19)


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