The Merry Season of Joyous Giving
This is the season of giving, and giving is for all seasons. Giving begets gratitude; we feel thankful even when we receive nothing in return. But we are always receiving. We are receiving blessings and love. The higher powers smile upon us and fill our hearts with joy. And it is during this special time of year when we most feel the gratitude of giving. We may not always be able to give material things as often as we would like, but we are always able to give away the love that is continually flowing. We give away our cheer and joy, as the love we receive creates more and more. The more we give, the more we are thankful, and the more thankful we are, the more things we find for which to be so, as the blessings multiply. It is like when the man from Galilee took a few loaves of bread, gave thanks and broke the bread, and with a few pieces of fish, passed them into a large crowd. And somehow this small meal produced many baskets full of leftover pieces, much more than what he began with. And so we give thanks and give away our joy, and watch it grow, as we increase the peace and goodwill in the world.
The Gift of Story
'Tis the season of giving, the season during which, over the years, we have received special gifts of story from the saints of storytelling.
There is the tale of the green creature-like man with the too tight shoes and the too small heart, who on one Christmas eve, donned a suit of red and entered the nearby village and stole everything that had anything to do with the holiday to come, the celebration of which had annoyed him for many a year. With all these things, the gifts, the decorations, and even the food for the feasts, he made his way up his mountain and waited for the deep disappointment of the villagers when they realized that the holiday that was soon to arrive, would not. But it was to his own astonishment that Christmas did indeed arrive even without all that beloved stuff, and the power and the spirit of that holy day, as well as the power in the immense joy of the villagers, was something that he could not take away. He discovered that it was also something he could not resist, and like those small loaves of bread, the size of his heart was greatly multiplied. He returned to the villagers all their holiday things and joined them in their celebrations, ever increasing the spirit of the day. His now large heart was filled with joy.
There is also the tale of that unkind, miserly, and sometimes cruel man who was a sworn enemy of Christmas and all that it stood for, the celebration of which had annoyed him for many a year. Then came that one Christmas eve when he found himself host to a few ghosts, beginning with the one of his former business partner who had come to warn him to change his ways, introducing him to a trio of spirits who would help him do so. This mean old man was taken to the Christmases of his own past and saw that he was not always such a miserable guy during this time of the year. He was then taken to the present Christmas to witness the cheer and joy that he was missing and had been missing. He was shown a scary future Christmas, where he came face to face with his own mortality, his passing an event that appeared to have no mourners. It was not made clear to him whether this was a definite future or a possible one. He chose the latter and awoke to beautiful Christmas morning a profoundly changed man, becoming a hero of this holy day. He became as kind as anyone, sharing in their merrymaking, and he used his prosperity to help others, and again like the breaking of the bread, his joy of the season increased the joy in his town and in the world. He began his new life with a hearty laugh.
The Gift of Light
We read the stories and watch the films - and there are many. We are inspired by them because they show us the power of spirit and love that is experienced during this special season.
There is another transformation taking place. This is the one through which the sublime spirit and the bright light of love becomes flesh and bones. He is a child who will become the man who heals and forgives.. He is the one who breaks and blesses the bread, gives thanks and sends the pieces into the crowd. He does this also with His forgiving, healing, and love. These things will also multiply and continue to increase as long as we keep passing them around, sending the love and the light into the world. We give thanks and we rejoice, as the joy in our hearts grow.
The Season For Giving
'Tis the season of giving, and the greatest of our giving is when we give to the children. We do this with humility, giving the credit to that legendary and jolly elf, with the merriest of smiles and the heartiest of laughs. Every year he visits in his bright red suit with his magic sleigh and his sack full of toys. The smiles of the children bring joy to our hearts. We do our best to give to those children less fortunate, and we give and assist as best we can all who are in need.
And above all, we give our love, and we give thanks. We are happy to give, as we feel the gratitude and the miracles of Christmas time. We remember the lessons of good old Mr. Scrooge and the good old Grinch. We say farewell, until next year, to jolly old Santa Clause. And we remember Jesus, the Christ child, whose forgiving and healing ways remain with us all year long. We give thanks and break bread as we increase the love, increase the goodness, and increase the peace. We can do this every day, as we remain merry, and allow our hearts to overflow with joy.
© 2013 Paul K Francis