The Addition and Subtraction of Christmas

download (7)

Christmas time is definitely everyone’s favourite time of year, but I worry that people forget what the reason for this season is. This is because over the past few decades, we as a society have added things to Christmas and subtracted vital things from it.

Happy Holidays!

I first noticed ‘Happy Holidays’ replacing Merry Christmas a few years ago when there were suddenly more ‘Happy Holidays’ cards in card shops and people would greet you it, instead of Merry Christmas. From what I understand, it is a bid to include and incorporate other religious holidays that also happen to fall around the Christmas season (November till January).

I of all people am a huge advocate of equality and social cohesion for all types of people, religions and so on. However, I also believe in the monopolisation of religion. By this I mean, every religion is different and therefore each religious celebration should be given the space and monopoly to be celebrated how and when it wants to, respectively.

Personally, I think the merger of multiple (different) religious holidays to the replacement of one of the most important Christian celebrations is disrespectful. Why can’t we say Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Eid Mubarak separately? Why can’t we get cards that print these separately. Why must we combine all our celebrations and holidays, all for the sake of being politically correct and economically efficient.

It’s not about the money, money, money!

Christmas has become so over-commercialised that young families have come to secretly dread this time of year. Children are taught that Christmas equals expensive presents from mummy and daddy, while mummy and daddy are struggling to pay the bills and ensure that those same children have food in their bellies. It is actually so sad.

Whether you are a Christian or not, Christmas is a period we should all think about love. Jesus’ birth was the beginning of a demonstration of the craziest display of love man and womankind can even begin to think about. It is a time to show those around you love. To that lonely, elderly neighbour. To that widowed man who sits next to you on the bus every day.Spread Christmas spirit by showing random acts of kindness and love.

I hope that my children (in the distant future;) grow up in a society less concerned about commercial matters like what £150 trainers are in style or what new flashy toy is on trend and are more concerned with being good people.

Christmas hymns and carols being replaced with Christmas songs

I am generally a fan of modern things. Being born in the 90s, on the eve of the new millennium, I am part of what they call the digital generation. Also, I am a huge love of Christmas music all year around (yass a little bit of Bublé or Mariah is always good). But what I am not a fan of is carols and hymns being replaced with songs that are only Christmas related because they mention Santa or Mistletoe. I love the classics like ‘Oh Holy Night’, ‘Away in the Manger’ and ‘Silent Night’.

I am not saying those other songs do not have a place, because of course they do. It’s just their place is not at carol services – I do not want to be hearing ‘Santa Claus is coming to town’ in a carol service please and thank you.

The disappearance of the nativity scene

There are some obvious inaccuracies in nativity scenes but over all, they are such an important part of Christmas, especially for children. We rarely hear of school nativity plays in schools any more, and when we do, we only hear about them because they have been drastically added to or subtracted from.

The subtraction of the main guy Himself

It can be argued (and it definitely is) that Christmas is a pagan holiday and is not the right time of year. People need to understand that those things hardly matter. Christmas is a celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ, who was God born in human form to die for the sins and salvation of the whole world. Whether or not you believe this does not influence or change what Christmas is.

Of course people who do not believe that still enjoy Christmas time, and rightly so. But we as a society need to stop editing Jesus out of Christmas, with the intentions of not hurting people’s feelings.

Growing up in London, we were taught to be tolerant and respectful of other religions and cultures. We were taught what things were offensive to people’s beliefs and therefore we respected that. We would never dream of amending other religious holidays, so then why is it so easy to take the Christ out of Christmas?

It’s not Xmas, it’s CHRISTmas. 

If there are parts of Christmas you do not agree with, then simply do not participate in them. I would prefer that. Than taking out the key message of the whole thing – Jesus. He’s the reason for the season.

I think the moral of this post is that if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. We need to stop making Christmas all things to all people. Christmas is what it is. Have fun with it and adapt it for yourself, your family and community. But do not claim that that universally Christmas, that’s your Christmas traditions. Do not let Christmas lose its value and just become another thing we do in the year.

Paula Melissa xx






My heart is really heavy, right now. There are so many things going on in the world that make me feel small, and useless and out of control. Yes, I know this is not about me but I want to be able to feel like I have done something to reduce the hurt that our world is feeling.

An earthquake in Japan. An attack in Lebanon. Bombings in Baghdad. Hurricane in Mexico. Terrorist attacks in Paris. I do not know what is happening and why it is happening, and neither do I claim to. If you have been affected by any of these disasters, I pray that you and your families are comforted. All I can offer are my prayers and my condolences.

I feel like we are getting closer and closer to the end of the world and while this is a really scary thought, I am strangely comforted by the idea of meeting my Maker soon. I know you may not what to here this as it may sound like a total cliché, but honestly, God is in control. I do not understand what is happening and I do not fully understand God and His ways, but I think that we will be alright.

Keep praying and keep fighting, because we only lose when we turn on each other based on religion and race and political views. We need to understand that before any of that, we share one thing in common – we are all human. We are all part of the human race. There are human beings out there today mourning the loss of children, wives, and husbands. Why not focus your energy on praying for them and showing them love in anyway you can, instead of spreading hatred towards people and religious groups. We are all mourning, as a human race we are all mourning.

My heart is so heavy. #PrayForHumanity

Paula Melissa xx


Jehovah Jireh, My Provider

Guys, this is a really real, really raw post, because right now, in this very moment, I am feeling some really real, really raw feelings.

It is days like this, moments like these that I begin to understand why they call God Jehovah Jireh! He is a provider. When you need something, He will supply it for You.

Coming to University was a new experience for me. It was my first real taste of actual independence. I am an adult. I am in charge of what I do, where I go, what I eat and perhaps most importantly where I spend my money.

This summer before uni, I got a job and worked really hard with the intention of saving money. However, as soon the money touched my bank account, it seemed to instantly evaporate literally into thin air. I suddenly had all these expenses and I watched as my hard-earned money disappeared.

You do not realise the value of money until you work for it yourself. You start to question all your purchases, like “This dress is worth 2 hours of work. Is it really worth it?”

I then got to the stage, nearly a month into uni, when I realised that food is expensive. So are textbooks. So are clothes and washing and printing and buses. Everything costs money and I was running low on the stuff.

So I did what any reasonable person would do. I called my parents. I expected a swift transfer of money into my account, instead I was met with “Trust in the Lord, Paula. Don’t worry.”

Okay. My parents  quoting Bible scriptures is a normal occurrence for me and usually it is quite comforting, but not this time. Like, obviously I trust in the Lord but can you just transfer some money to me please???? [They did eventually send me some money. Eventually!]

But reluctantly I did. I trusted in God and left the fact that I had no money in His hands and did not allow it to ruin my day.

I call Him Jehovah Jireh because He provides in ways that are beyond our imagination. He provides through means that we are not even aware of.

If you take Him as your Jehovah Jireh, He will show up strong. Just call out to him, leave it in His hands and trust in Him.



Paula Melissa xx

Comparing yourself with others


When I was a little younger, I had officially come to grips with the idea that I am not as ‘naturally pretty’ as other girls. Where I got this idea from, I do not particularly know, but I do know that I believed it with all of my heart. In my young mind, some people are just beautiful. They were born with the lucky combination of chromosomes that made them gorgeous. But it is not all bad, because the rest of us have strengths too. Some of us were born with smarts, some can sing and dance, some have the undeniable talent to make people laugh. I did not believe I was given beauty, but that was okay because I exploited my strengths. I sang, I made people laugh, I worked hard in school, I wrote and I was a good friend to people who needed me. All the while, I never felt like not being ‘conventionally pretty’ hindered me. If anything, it empowered me, because I believed that everything I had, I had earned and didn’t have just because I was nice to look at.

Looking back, it is clear that I only had this view about myself because I compared myself to other people.

For most people, comparing yourself to others just distracts you from the many good qualities you hold. You might be amazing in one aspect, but complete overlook it because someone else shines bright in one particular thing. I learnt that I was beautiful. Maybe not in the conventional way, but then again, who wants conventional? I learnt that some of the things that make some people pretty do not work for me. I had to find indiviudal things that worked for me and made me confident and gorgeous. I think I have.

If you realise something does not work for you, you either forget about it or make it work for you. Life does not give you time to whine and cry about things that do not work, because there will be many things that do not work. If you do not work hard for it, you do not deserve it. Simple as that. And if you get things without working for them, you will not fully understand its value.

I am proud of the beautiful, young woman I have become today, mainly because I worked hard to become her. Because of this, I fully understand my value. I do not ever need to compare who I am, what I am, what I have to someone else, because I am enough. Until I realised this, I was incomplete, whether I realised it or not. If more people could see their worth, they would not care so much when they are cast down or told they are not good enough.

When I was a little girl, I was ‘encouraged’ to join my church choir, mainly because they desperately needed members. I had no interest in music and singing, I was much too busy with things nine-year old girls do. But I joined and soon I realised… I hated it. It was not for me, so I believed. I couldn’t hit the high notes, it took up way too much of my time and to make matters worse, the members were incredibly rude. They were not afraid to tell a nine-year old girl that she really could not sing. After crying on multiple occations, I realised they were probably right. Compared to the adults in the choir, I could not sing at all. However, I also realised that if I kept working hard, I will be able to sing. Fast forward a decade or two, and here I am. I can sing. I may not be Mariah Carey, but I can definetly hit more notes than I could then. The point of my anecdote is to demonstrate that comparing yourself with other people can also be a positive thing, but only if you use the comparison to motivate you. If you do it to pinpoint all the bad things about yourself, then it is not helpful.

You do not need someone to make you realise that you are better than where you are in life, right now. You just need yourself to make that first step to improvement. But sometimes it can be just as helpful to have people to measure against, just to show your progression.


Paula Melissa xx

The Restoration Plot pt 2

Two years ago, around this time of year, I wrote a blog post on Easter. I want to share it again, because sometimes we take Easter, and what it represents, for granted.

He died, but now He’s alive. It’s a miracle.

We are remembering all the pain Jesus took upon His shoulders. All the discomfort and humiliation – just to make sure we have our place with God. He restored creation, after sin had attempted at decreating creation. He was that restoration. He gave us the provision, the pathway, the guide, on how to be sin-less. He brought a never quenched light into the darkness. No darkness can comprehend His light. He sent a comforter, a friend, a still small voice, living in the depth of our hearts. It was His Holy Spirit. His Holy Spirit dwells with us, within us and we didn’t even need to fight for that. We didn’t have to work for it. He gave us the easy job and took the hard one. He gave us the job of having to love Him. Of having to praise and glorify Him. And if you realise how great He is, you will realise our praises are nothing compared to what He deserves. Compared to how amazing, and awesome He really is. How loving, and huge and unimaginable He is. The human mind cannot even begin to understand how great He is. We weren’t worthy, we aren’t worthy, but He made us worthy. He became Sin. Sin died on that cross. He became Sin so you and I could be spotless. Spotless. Without a spot or blemish. We have become new creatures in Christ Jesus. We have His love working in us. His unfailing, unending, unexplainable, undeserving love, made available and accessible to us. Forever. And ever. He did that. And not for His gain, but for ours.

What kind of love is that? What manner of man is Jesus? That even death could hold Him. That even sin couldn’t phase Him. 

That’s my King. My Lord. The Lord of my life. The love of my life; That’s my Jesus. And your Jesus. The Jesus who fights for us. He is salvation.

And for all of that, I live in continual gratitude.

Thank you Jesus.

Peace&Love. Made available by the Blood of Jesus being shed for us.

Paula Melissa xx

Another year

It’s my birthday!!

I get way too excited for my birthday every year, you would actually think I was turning ten lol. But yes, another year has come and gone and that is fairly exciting because that year of life wasn’t promised. What I mean by that is that it wasn’t certain that I would be alive for another year of life and I am grateful that I am. This year taught me so many crazy, amazing, necessary things. I’ve become a stronger person, a more mature person, a more tolerant person. This year has fuelled my journey of becoming a complete person – mind, body and soul. God is working on me, and this year has played such a prominent part in that process.

I am grateful for my family, my friends and all my blog readers. Thank you for everything you have all added to my life.

Let me also take this opportunity to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a happy and prosperous new year. 2015 must rock!


Here’s to another year guys :)


Paula ox’


I did this a year ago and now I’m doing 40 facts to add to it. I hope you find this at least mildly entertaining.

  1. I am the eldest of four children; I have two younger sisters and one younger brother.
  2. I have a pet dog called Rolfie. He is 9 months old and we’ve had him since he was 6 months old. He hates dog food and strangers. (He is smelling me while I write this.)
  3. I’m not a party person. I’d literally prefer to stay at home than go out, most of the time.
  4. I love make -up, especially eye make-up.
  5. I’ve been blogging for over two years.
  6. I can’t ride a bike.
  7. My first published piece was a poem I wrote when I was 12.
  8. I’ve worked in the government.
  9. Both my parents are lawyers, ministers and authors. My mum is also a councillor in our local council.
  10. I love animated movies.
  11. I love cooking, but I can get extremely cranky if people bother me whilst I’m in my cooking zone.
  12. I’ve been singing in my church choir since I was 9/10
  13. My favourite colour is purple.
  14. RomComs are the best.
  15. I can be quite a loud person if I’m feeling comfortable but I generally hate unnecessary noise.
  16. I love education and learning but hate school.
  17. I got to sleep before 10pm most nights.
  18. I am a born again Christian and I strongly believe in God.
  19. Jesus is my life. My life is Jesus.
  20. I use twitter and Instagram way too much – (@PaulaPaceSetter)
  21. I have a complicated relationship with food.
  22. I let my age limit me in life for a long time.
  23. I find people who are similar to me extremely annoying, but at the same time they usually become my closest friends.
  24. I have poor eyesight and therefore have prescribed glasses that I never really wear.
  25. I love gospel music; it is so uplifting.
  26. I became a YouTuber in Summer 2014.
  27. The only countries I have been to are Nigeria, Belgium, France and Wales, and obviously England, which is where I live.
  28. I can be such a fangirl, but I hide it relatively well.
  29. When I become friends with someone I am also committed to helping them or supporting them. Due to this, I am still friends with people I met 10 years ago.
  30. I usually prefer covers to the original song.
  31. I hate swearing with a passion.
  32. I have strong opinions about certain topics, and I am not easily persuaded.
  33. I hate going to the cinema.
  34. I have more girl friends than guy friends but tend to be closer with my guy friends than girl friends.
  35. I don’t like boybands.
  36. I don’t drink fizzy drinks or alcohol, I only like juice.
  37. Ice cream is my kryptonite.
  38. Young people are my passion and I spend most of my time trying to positively impact young people’s life.
  39. Recently, I’ve decided I want to be a presenter, after presenting a talent show and showcase, as well as a journalist; Benny Bonsu is my inspiration when it comes to journalism and presenting.
  40. I am NOT an outdoorsy person but in Summer 2014 I went to Wales, where I climbed up a waterfall, I climbed inside dark tunnels inside a mountain and came out at the top, I went camping, I went canoeing and I jumped into a freezing lake even though I can’t swim. I literally still can’t believe that I did all of that.


Paula ox’