It got me to thinking... now I know that we are in tough economic times and I suppose that to some, the thought of less presents and fewer holiday trimmings could be depressing... but really, is it the presents and the trimmings that truly make the holiday?
Personally, Thanksgiving has always been one of my favorite holidays... why? Because it is in no way commercial. Thanksgiving is all about being together with family & friends, eating a ton of food, playing games, watching football and loving every second of it!
Now, Christmas on the other hand has become very commercialized in our culture. How many people do you personally buy Christmas presents for? Think about it... we start shopping for Christmas way before Thanksgiving... and I bet if your list is as long as mine, that it puts a decent size hole in your bank account... especially when your kids are in school and have seven favorite teachers EACH. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE giving presents... it is absolutely awesome to see my kids (all three of them) open presents on Christmas day, but give me a break. It is not going to be "the worst holiday season ever" if I don't get anything!
Presents Shmesents. It is the Spirit of Christmas that I can't live without. Nothing warms my heart like seeing the Christmas lights strung up through the neighborhoods or nativity scenes in homes. I bask in putting up our little tree with the homemade ornaments I made the first year of our marriage along with all the ornaments we have been given from family and friends through the years. I get up and dance when I hear Mariah Carey singing "All I want for Christmas" or "Joy to the World" and I get teary eyed to hear Celine Dion sing "Oh Holy Night" or Sarah McLachlan sing "Silent Night". I thrive on baking cookies or making fudge with my kids to deliver to neighbors. I live for reading a different Christmas scripture or story every day from the book my sister Carole made me a few years ago. Most of all, I just want to be with the people I love... ALL of them, all month long. Good family, good friends, good times... that is seriously what it is all about.
Remember the story of the Grinch? He went in to Whoville and took every present, ornament, crumb of food... EVERYTHING the Who's had, hoping to steal Christmas from them. But in the end, he could not take their spirit... and dang it Mr. Radio Talk Show Host... you aren't taking mine either!
"doesn't come from a store."
means a little bit more!"
I don't care if I don't get the latest Ipod or a touch screen phone. Perhaps Christmas NEEDS to be downsized a bit. Perhaps we need to concentrate less on the size and value of the presents we give and receive, and focus more on the Spirit in which they were given. Our nations economy isn't gonna make this Christmas "the worst holiday season ever" for me or anyone around me because I plan on spreading the joy dude! (Starting with a Christmas play list on my blog! That's right folks... I am giving in to help save the season!)After all, Christmas is all about a little baby who was born in a stable... honestly, what more do we need than him?