The Giving in Christmas
Time flies over the holidays, doesn’t it? Wow! It’s now past Thanksgiving and going on to Christmas. Over the years, I have become aware that the commercialization of Christmas grows more and more unappealing to me. In light of the fact that not only is it about spending tons of money I don’t have, it also reminds me that the whole intention and meaning of Christmas has been totally lost amidst the tinsel, the gifts, the pies, the trees and the stockings.
Yes, I love Christmas the most of all the holidays. I love the lights, the Christmas carols, the smiles of the children on Santa’s lap at the mall, and the beautiful wide-eyed wonder of those innocent little ones when they wake up and find that they got their number one gift under the tree so that their belief in magic is renewed for another year. To believe in magic, even as an adult, is one of the true blessings of life.
It’s a sad state of affairs, however, that most of us feel it’s the one time of the entire year to go out of our way to show a greater sense of giving to those we love (and even sometimes to strangers.) Do we do the “Christmas Angel” gifts to the less fortunate children out of a sense of guilt? Why can’t we do a little something for them every day? Why does it have to be one day a year?
You do realize that doing something kind and loving and giving for someone usually does NOT have to be a case of spending money on them, right? You can volunteer at a nursing home, you can volunteer to do story time at the local library. You can volunteer to serve meals at the homeless shelter. You can ring the Salvation Army bell for an hour a week. We all make up reasons for not having enough time to do these things, but people, sincerely, we could all make time to do something small to benefit others, if we truly wanted to.
In this life, I have decided that I want to make a difference to others in many ways. A lot of times, the others whose lives I am trying to touch seem to be impenetrable from the walls they have built in their minds but it doesn’t discourage me from knowing that I am going to touch one life, even just one life and make a difference to them somehow. I want more than anything to benefit others.
I am hoping that in some small way, each of us can realize that the true meaning of Christmas isn’t to see how much money we can spend, it’s really, truly about loving and caring and giving of your time and your heart. Just being there to listen and comfort someone is still a way of giving.
I wrote this piece for my friends and family in 2003. I share it with you now so that whoever reads it will remember how important your existence is on this earth:
In This Season of Peace
My wish for you is that you come to realize how precious and valuable you are,
That you remember we are all just reflections of each other, That we are of the same spirit, the same heart, the same soul.
May you come to see the gift in each adversity, the wonder and beauty in the world around you and may you share the unconditional love and acceptance for others that God has for you every day of your life.
May your heart grow deeper in love and compassion, may your mind open wider to the acceptance of adversity, May your spirit soar higher in the belief in miracles
And may you always remember that I am here for you, to listen, comfort, accept and love you exactly as you are!
December 22, 2003