I can still remember that Christmas in 2001 when, after opening his gifts, my son looked at me and asked “Is that all?”
It had been a tough year financially, and we had done our best to provide him with the best Christmas we could afford. But after weeks of seeing commercial after commercial of this toy and that car, my son fully expected to find everything he wanted under the tree.
So once Christmas morning finally arrived, my son didn’t care much for the brand new coat that would keep him warm, or the books that would teach him how to add and subtract. He wanted the Superman action figure that could hang from the doorway. He wanted the Elmo doll that laughed and giggled. He wanted the transformer truck that could light up and turn flips.
Aren’t we a lot like that, too? God gives us everything we need: breath in our lungs, a warm home, a car to drive, a well-paying job, hands to prepare a big meal for our family and friends. Yet we still long for the "shiny and new” things in life. We can often act like entitled children when it comes to receiving gifts because we’re looking for presents UNDER the tree, instead of seeking the PRESENCE of God in our lives.
Believe me, I still have some work to do. I have moments where I am selfish too! But every time I catch myself saying a selfish word, or exhibiting an "But I WANT!" attitude, I ask God to check my heart. I don’t ever want to expect the presents I receive to define the level of joy I’ll feel that day. Instead, I want my heart to be filled with the goodness of God!
Now, instead of an endless mountain of gifts to open, I want to open my door to find my family on the other side to join us for dinner. And instead of viewing countless credit card bills in January for all the unnecessary gifts I purchased in December, I now view my January calendar, which is filled with lunch dates and face to face time with my friends and family.
I pray that your Christmas season is everything you want it to be. Whether it is a house filled with family and friends, or a quiet day at home in your pajamas, watching the Hallmark channel. But most of all, I hope your Christmas season reminds you of the true gift of the season: God.
Mama. Wife. Poet. Teacher. Maniac.