Hubby always goes out and gets us a tree and he brought back a doozy this year. I wanted a small one and he brought back the perfect specimen. He found one that had little pinecones still clinging to it. It's just adorable! This year I'm changing up the decorations just a little. Instead of colored lights I'm using white lights. Isn't it odd? A Christmas tree makes just about any room feel so cozy and the smell is amazing!
I've got to get busy too. I've got goody boxes to fill with homemade items and canned goods, teas to prepare, all because next week I want to get everything mailed out. Our presents have all been purchased or made and only a couple yet that haven't been shipped. We didn't have to buy a lot this year and we haven't bought anything for each other yet. We keep bouncing ideas back and forth. Do we buy each other a surprise gift or pool our resources and get something together - or just go out and about and do special things, like go to dinner or a movie or whatever? I've got to say - Christmas is definitely more fun with little ones in the house. Now, don't get me wrong - the true meaning of Christmas is not lost on us but watching the innocent light in children's eyes, after what seems like forever anticipating a visit from St. Nick, is a glorious sight that I definitely miss!!
I remember each year always explaining what Christmas really meant to my boys; and trying to teach them selfless giving. This was high on their Father's and my list of learning. "Selfless giving" - wow, now there's a concept!! There's definitely not as much of that around as there seems to have been in days past. Why, I wonder? Have we forgotten how? Is it because we've stripped the true meaning of Christmas out of this beautiful time of year or is it just that over time and gradual practice it's simply gone to the wayside, much like so many other basic skills?
Giving, you know, is a heart skill. Because we are by nature selfish creatures, we have to practice giving. There's an old saying, "use it or lose it." It doesn't always just come naturally you know. We are somewhat greedy. We have a tendency to go by the mantra, "It's better to receive than to give", instead of, "It's better to give than to receive." I suppose a great deal of why we are the way we are goes all the way back to the Garden of Eden, right? You see there's really nothing new - we are much the same inside as we were way back then. We simply make the wrong choices.
Yes, I think it's all about choice. I choose to remember that Christmas is the day set aside to remind us that Jesus Christ was born. The God/Man came to this earth as a tiny baby, to grow up in a very harsh world, teaching us how to live and how to die, teaching us how trust and to believe in something much greater than ourselves, taking all our sins, our bad, upon Himself thereby giving us the gift of eternal life - if only we would trust and believe that He is indeed Jesus Christ the Son of God. Ah, but there it is. The big word - "giving". Yep, it haunts us, doesn't it? Jesus freely "gave" His life for us.
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16