Every year, each and every year, we do the same thing this time of year. We turn away from our daily toils and trouble and spend many hours thinking about how to please others. What can we get that will bring a time of joy to others perhaps a frivolous thing that brings a giggle or that one special, long time desired item that fulfills a wish. We worry and fret over the decision weighing all that goes into that purchase the right color, the right cost, the right time. Is it age appropriate for the little ones, is the size right for the older ones, or the big question, “what do you get for the person who seemingly has everything”. So, our waking hours are spent thinking, planning, and budgeting because Christmas isn’t just about the gifts, but also about the food, drink and decorations.
In between we schedule time to attend the school play, the church program, the light shows, and the special parties with friends and families. It’s all hustle and bustle and endless lists. Once the decisions are made and the purchases made, there comes the wrapping and ribbons and tags with the name carefully inscribed. Then, comes the magic moment of placing it under the tree. For a moment, just a moment, there underneath that tree lies the hope of joy for someone dear and a moment of fear that it won’t bring all you hope. As the presents pile up and the tree seems held erect by them all, the heart swells with joy and pride for the coming morning with the ooohing and aahhhing and bits of paper, tape, and ribbon scattered throughout the room. The excitement that reaches a fever pitch will all settle into a pleasant weariness followed by turkey and dressing, cranberry sauce, and other traditional favorites.
Another Christmas is complete. It becomes now memories brought back in sharp relief by chancing upon a photo or during a conversation. At the time, you may be too tired to really understand the impact of all that you have done. But it will be remembered and appreciated whether there is a thank you or not. Merry Christmas to us all.