On the other hand, I have seen some really lovely gifts. They are just stunning. Edges folded neatly under. No tape showing. Huge hand-made bows and everything perfectly centered and creased. You don’t even want to open them. I love gifts like that.
But if I handed a present like that to my children, they would rip all that loveliness into shreds because they know that something better waits inside. Something intended to show all the love the giver holds for that child. No time is wasted looking at the outside when the real treasure is waiting underneath.
That is the kind of Christmas I want to give to my children. I don’t want it to be about wrappings and bows, and doing all the right things. I don’t want it to be about the best cookies, prettiest gifts, most festive decorations, or perfectly hosted parties. I don’t want to worry about how clean the house is in our Christmas pictures. I don’t want to think about how perfectly the children are cutting out the cookie dough or how well their Christmas dresses match. I don’t want to try and make our wrappings perfect. Because the real treasure isn’t found there.
But I really want our season to be about beauty, family, celebration, joy. I want to enjoy every second because that second will never come again. I want to treasure the look on the toddler’s face as he watches the tree lights come on the first time. I want to enjoy every flour-filled minute of cookie messiness. I want to go sledding and not care how cold I am. I want to spend the evenings listening to Christmas hymns and not caring how much we DID that day, because what we ARE is where the treasure is found.
I want the quiet to ponder, as I do every year, the girl who sacrificed everything to birth the Savior of the world. I want to watch the falling snow and remember the family who struggled through the long miles to Bethlehem. I want to remember the incredible gift of the Creator wrapping himself in frail humanity and walking among wretchedness. I want to sing the songs and pray the prayers and live and love.
This Christmas let’s forget the wrappings and enjoy the treasure.
This is the first in a series of posts
on having a joy-filled Christmas.
Access the rest of the posts here.