The Spirit of Giving

Christmas is a season of giving. I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas day. Our day was spent with the traditional gift giving. However, that really started several days earlier. We had informed the kids (the four who are living at home) that gifts would be sparser than normal. If we had unlimited funds, we knew exactly what we would have gotten each one–a camera, a repaired car, a hand-forged knife, and a new leather trench coat. Money was not unlimited, hence the spending less. My husband and I did the shopping on the 23rd on our way home from a short trip. When we arrived home, our boys wanted to go shopping. So, back into town we went on Christmas Eve, with a short stop at the beach to take pictures of the high waves.

Sunset Bay, Charleston, Oregon

Sunset Bay, Charleston, Oregon

If Christmas shopping isn’t hectic enough, try shopping with everyone you are going to shop for there with you. Our youngest wondered how it work out. We explained it was possible because we had done it before when the kids were younger. It was fun to watch him think through who he wanted to purchase for and how to go about doing so with the money he had. He spent his paycheck and the money from grandma and grandpa for Christmas on presents. My husband and I also pitched in to help him out. In the end, he had bought gifts that would mean something to the recipient.

Christmas morning dawned with the usual excitement. Before breakfast, my husband and I wrapped gifts and put them under the tree. When I woke up our thirteen year old, he commented, “That’s a change. The parents wake the kid up on Christmas morning!” After breakfast, I helped him wrap his gifts. Then his older brother wrapped the one gift for our youngest. The joy of watching as people unwrapped what had been bought or made with care filled the room.

When all was said and done, my youngest came to me and quoted words from the Christmas play he had performed. The scene portrayed two modern day kids with a Bible time shepherd boy. The shepherd boy tries to understand the world the kids come from. He doesn’t understand how they can have so much and there can be people who have nothing. My son’s character then sang a song called Snowfall by local playwright, Neal Davis. The song tells how the homeless sit outside on a step longing for what happens inside through the window.

“Inside we share presents and gifts we don’t need.
We always want more, but we don’t call it greed.
We sing happy carols and thank God above,
forgetting that those without homes need our love
As the snow falls.”

My thirteen year old came up to me with a grin on his face saying, “We don’t want more, because we’re satisfied, and we don’t call it greed.” He was right. We were satisfied. He had given of what he had for others and felt the joy of giving.

Hopefully, you too have felt that joy. If you haven’t it is never too late. Think of one person you can give something to. It doesn’t have to be much or even cost much, as long as the person knows you thought of him or her.

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