I was talking with my daughter today, and we were discussing Christmas, isn't that what is on most people's minds these days? I R.E.A.L.L.Y want to simplify this year, (although I tell myself that every year), this year is the year! A few years ago, I blogged about reclaiming Christmas. I think it's a good time to re-post, I know some of you will identify. These were my thought then, and they are my thoughts today. . .
The other day, Bob asked me if I had a list of gifts I was giving for Christmas - I thought about it, and to tell you the truth, I hadn't even thought about a list! I'm having a hard time getting into the Christmas spirit! I am already tired of seeing Christmas decorations in the stores - since it started way before Halloween! I have to admit, I never really get tired of the Christmas feeling, I could listen to Christmas music all year long - and sometimes I do, but it seems like it is just so materialistic this year - the retailers wanting to boost sales because of the economy, and Christmas is their way of doing it. I guess by putting out Christmas lights and decorations, they know we will buy more. What happened to the time when Christmas started in December, not September or October? What happened to the time when we actually put a lot of thought into a Christmas present? It didn't matter how large the package was, as long as it was something that we had put our heart into. It seems to me, that everything is done at the last minute these days, just get something, it doesn't matter what, as long as it can be wrapped. I don't think that everyone does this, I know plenty of wonderful people who give from the heart, but I also know that many of us just want to get something and get home, I have been guilty of it myself!
I have talked to so many people who are wondering how they can "rob Peter to pay Paul", so that they can have all of the things that their children or grandchildren want under the tree, and they simply can't afford it. They want to make sure that they have mountains of presents for their loved ones to open on Christmas morning. Then, after Christmas, reality sets in. The bills aren't paid and the credit card bill is way too high. In ten years, they won't remember how many gifts they opened, or even what they got for Christmas. What they will remember, is the feeling that they had when they were with the ones that loved them. They will remember the day, not how many gifts they received.
I have tried to tell my family and myself for years, that is doesn't matter how many gifts you receive at Christmas, it's the gift of love that we give to each other that matters most of all. We should be showing our love for God and the Savior every day and thanking God for His gift to us . . . His Son. How thankful I am for this precious gift in my life. How fortunate I feel to be able to celebrate the birth of our Savior.
I am going to reclaim Christmas this year!! I will put more thought into my gift giving, making it simple, but meaningful. It won't matter how many gifts are under the tree, but what will be important, is how much love and thought was put into the gifts under my tree. I will dwell more on the meaning of Christmas, on my family and friends. This year, my goal is to make Christmas, something that we will remember with contentment, peace.and love.
I pray that I can be more Christlike this Christmas season and always. That I will think of those less fortunate than myself, give what I can and keep them in my prayers. I want to make this season as memorable as possible, with family, music and laughter. I want to make my home a haven for my family - a place here they can come to feel the "Spirit of Christmas", not just the stress and hassle of another holiday..
Let me know what you do that makes this season special for you and your family?