What About Christmas?

Nov 11th, 2008 | By Dr Jerry D Elrod | Category: Senior Moments Blog

What About Christmas, this year? Will we send cards or letters? How about gifts, will we be pressed by our own guilt, need, tradition, not to mention customary exchanges to spend when it really isn’t prudent to do so?

How can we be honest with ourselves and everybody else on our list? How can we avoid creating any tension, unnecessary expectations, disappointments as the day approaches?

Seems to me these are this year’s issues as we struggle to determine what the wisest way to share the spirit that Christmas really is. Going overboard, just because it is expected, certainly is lacking in wisdom and common sense.

How do we earnestly and genuinely confront what is an honest situation? Reduced resources is an almost universal reality this time around.

One of my favorite Christmas stories is called “How Come Christmas?” It tells of ol’ Sandy Claus taking nothing more than a bright shiny apple to Jesus as a cradle gift. Nothing elaborate or simple, but something that came from the heart.

This is the year to make a list of gifts from the heart.

Assume you make a budget and end up with $100 to divide among your several gifts to be given. Let’s also assume there are 12 people on your list. Let’s also assume that half of those are persons who live nearby and the other half live far enough away, you won’t see them in person this year.

Now how do you go about dividing up that $100 in a satisfactory and fair way. Maybe you could spend about $5 on each gift, plus the cost of postage for those who live far away. Or you could buy the ingredients for fudge or brownies plus postage and wrapping and share equally among the 12. Or you could just divide 12 into $100 and send each an equal amount of money, coming out at about $8.33 minus postage per person.

Or you could get creative. What if you refused to reduce your gift giving to some equal portion of a given amount? What if you chose to write a personal story to each person, describing their value to your life? What if you sent them a duplicated photo of a special time you had shared with them? What if you found some long collected item for each person and sent that as a special token to help them remember how precious your relationship has been over the years? What if you just completely ignored the conventional rules for gift giving and just dug and dug into your treasures until at last something came up that was and will always be special to the two of you? Wrap it and send it or put it under the tree.

This year, ignore the cost, avoid the shops, forget about convention…think only of the person and the uniqueness of the gift that expresses the wonder of your love and deep appreciation of the person. That, dear soul, is the true spirit of giving and of Christmas.



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