It’s Christmas Time!
What a wonderful time of the year. I remember when I was growing up it seemed like Christmas would never get here. Now, it seems to come in ever increasing frequency.
We all tend to get caught up in pursuing the perfect Christmas present for our friends and loved ones. We are “encouraged” by the omnipresent commercials and sales ploys that a Merry Christmas means we buy lots of stuff. We may even succumb to peer pressure from seeing our neighbors with the latest “toys”. We all know we need the latest in electronics or shiny new baubles. Maybe it’s a new fishing rod or shotgun. Don’t get me wrong, as a financial advisor I have a great deal of satisfaction from helping my clients have the ability to get fun things.
There’s nothing wrong with having fun things, because they are quite simply, fun. But do all the fun things we get bring satisfaction or peace to our hectic, fast paced lives? Sometimes our new fun things require a great deal of maintenance and upkeep that can can really wear us out.
Maybe the real gifts are not always things that require maintenance. Giving can mean a lot more than material things. How do we give? I submit we give of ourselves to each other in our relationships. Our friends and families, in the great scheme of things, are of much more value than any material thing. Relationships are not easy, and require lots of work. It takes courage to risk rejection when we reach out to others. When friction or disappointments occur, grace and forgiveness are required in abundance. Is there someone you need to reconcile with this Christmas season? Be brave and take the first step to reconciliation. You’ll be surprised how free you feel.
Our relationships make life so rich, but there are other ways to give of ourselves. There are those all around us who are less fortunate than us. Finding a way to help make a difference for those in need around us can make all the difference in their lives. And maybe in our life too, because it helps us gain perspective and beat back our selfish tendencies.
I guess what I’m leading up to is the spirit of Christmas is really all about love inspired from above. We have an example of love in action for us to follow. It is about the greatest gift that we, and the world, could ever receive. “For unto you is born a Savior, he is Christ the Lord.” My hope and prayer is that we all will let the love and hope of the Christmas story fill our hearts and minds and inspire us to action. It can make all the difference in our lives and those around us, and make Christmas meaningful all year long.