‘Tis the Season
It’s time for a reminder. It’s advent season. You may own an advent calendar that offers candies or scripture or a new decoration for the Christmas tree as you open each little number to count the days till Christmas and the inevitable GIFT EXCHANGE. It’s an important element of the season and holiday.
There are lots of ways to celebrate the season. We didn’t do it perfectly. But every year, we made some kind of effort to focus on the Reason for the Season: Jesus. Some years, we did special readings. Sometimes, we didn’t get up from the dinner table till specific scriptures for each day had been read. It didn’t matter how we did it. We tried to focus on Jesus rather than gift giving.
We did other pre-Christmas things as well: Operation Christmas Child with Samaritan’s purse. Each child got to select a gender and age range and select gifts for a child in another part of the world by filling a shoe box with necessary and special items. Tooth brushes, soap, toys, colors, paper, coloring books, and any extras that would fit in the boxes thrilled our children as each one imagined the joy of the child receiving it.
We Christmas caroled for care centers and OWL. It brought joy to the residents and reminded us why we do special things.
We made a tradition of decorating the tree and our home with specific things to remind us of Jesus and the gifts we have from him. When it was all complete, we would turn the light on the Christmas tree, sit on the fireplace hearth and enjoy the first of the Christmas cookies and hot chocolate.
However you celebrate the season with your family, focus on the why of gift giving; the One who came as the best gift for our souls. In our world of consumerism and the importance of ‘getting’ vs. giving, it’s the least we can do. Mark the season with things that build memories.