Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Christmas season bears down on us, joy, sad, and desperation abounds...

Every year Christmas comes around, just like any other birthday we celebrate it annually.  I find that each is different, as it should be, but the swing of it sometimes astonishes me.  There are the years when it is such a joyous Christ driven event, I think those are the best ones.  The ones when the pure joy of knowing the Lord gave his life that we might have eternal life.  We see his giving in all we survey.  He is in the littlest of things.  He is in the joy of a child viewing the lights on a tree.  He is in the songs of joy that we hear, he is in the giving of yourself for others, he is in the giving of a thoughtful gift to a loved one.  He is in the season, he is the reason for the season and it is apparent everywhere.  It is sad that those kind of Christmas's are more and more something we do not see.  It is possible, but for the most part, people have thrown out the Christ in Christmas in favor of the greed and commercialism that is such an ugly part of the modern Christmas.

We now, so much of the time, have the pressures of the season, the keeping up with the Jone's attitude of getting your child that "vogue" Christmas gift.  It is more and more about what I can get and not what of myself I can give.  There are those that whip out a check book, yes it is needed but is it really giving, for charity.   Do people, for the most part help there fellow man or do the message their ego's by being able to say I gave this much, knowing that if they couldn't deduct it on their taxes they would have used the money differently?  It is really giving in the spirit of Christmas if it is only about the bottom line?  Do you ever think to give of your self and not just with the checkbook?  Please don't not give because the less fortunate do need the moneys you give but why not give of yourself as well, that is the giving that your soul longs for.  The one on one of helping to better someone in this season and for that matter all seasons.  I have read of the secret Santa's that pay of lay aways for the single parents struggling to give a gift to their children.  That has got to be a rewarding kind of giving.  There is the giving of knitting caps for the children in foster care, or the children that count on the local thrift store for their clothing and maybe their gifts.  The joy they get on their little faces when they are given a handmade item that grandma's used to make for their grand kids.  Maybe they don't have a grandparent, or maybe their grandparent is raising them and works a full time job to be able to just feed that unexpected, usually unplanned for child they are lovingly raising.  There is the joy of picking a name off of a tree of a child that would otherwise not get a gift, I won't say from under a tree because they probably won't have a tree if the parent has to worry more about feeding their child than giving them a gift there probably isn't enough for a tree either.  I can go on but you get my meaning, give because it calls to your heart and not just because it is a good way to funnel money from the tax man.

Think of the sad people you know this time of year,  sadly more people kill themselves in this month than any other.  The despair and loneliness that abounds in this world shocks me.  More and more people populate this world every years, and we are more and more a lonely society.  We are told not to take our problems to a loved one, a friend or a mate we are urged to get a therapist.  Sad that we have come to that, I think that there is a need for some therapists but then their presence in a life is more important than the real people in your life it is a sad circumstance and says something about our society.  We no longer value the real relationships in our world we are a superficial society that pays someone that has no concept of our lives to set and listen to our problems.  Where is the love in that,  since when did that become that first option you have?  Have you never prayed?  Have you never had a family, or cared enough about yours to make the bonds it would take to have a sympathetic ear you don't have to pay threw the nose for?  Have you no mate?  Have you no friends? Have you no Pastor or Preacher?  Have you no family in God?  Such a sad society we have become.

Look around you and see the people who can't afford to put out money for the "perfect" Christmas gift over extending themselves, buying more gifts than any child needs at one time.  When did one special gift made with love, or picked out as a special gift with love, become not enough?  Why are we teaching our children it is all about the gift and not the time we spend with people?  When did buying the tree become the normal?  Oh, and when did the pop up tree, predecorated, become more the thing than the day spent picking the right one in the woods, dragging it threw the snow, making snow angels along the way,  stuffing it in the car or truck, snow dripping on the seat.  Coming home sipping hot chocolate as we watched dad put the lights on the tree,  as the kids picked out the ornaments they wanted to hang.  The one from their first Christmas,  "the angel with the broken leg from their third has to have a place of honor; it has such memories, remember how she dropped to the ground when the dog chased the cat and the tree nearly toppled over on the the baby?  She is my fallen angel she has to go up there on the tree,  I have to have her there."  Do predecorated trees give the joy of a broken angel?  There are so many stories in a box of childhood ornaments.... There are so many stories to be told over that baking of a cookie, the making of a fudge or the cooking of a meal together....

Did you ever notice that thievery raises this time of year?  Is it because somewhere there is a father under pressure to put something under a tree?  Is there a son needing to give something to his parents?  Is there desperation that the runaway teen has nothing to eat, it is cold out but they are never going back to the torture of a broken home and they see the joy that others have that they know not how to have or get in their lives?  Is it the lost that don't know that Christ is the reason for the season,  is it that they don't know that the gift he offers is so much more than a tree, a present or a turkey dinner.  It is the gift of life eternal and that if you step away for the commercial and the pressures that come with it you can see Christ for what he is.  God, that came down to earth as a man, a real man with blood, pain and all the temptation we endure, beaten, bloodied, mocked and tortured, allowing man kind to murder him, with the full knowledge he could step out of it at any moment, but for that the giving of his life he gave salvation to any who asked it and accepted his gift.  Remember when you open that present under the tree on the observed day of his birth that his real gift is still here and still open able to all.... tomorrow.

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