By Tracy Kirby
Image by Crista Ballard Photography
It’s here. You can feel it, smell it in the air. The Christmas gift buying and receiving frenzy has begun. Actually, it probably began sometime back in September according to Hobby Lobby’s inventory stock, but for many of us, this month of December is really when the gifting fervor reaches its peak. If you’ve been reading this column for any amount of time, you know, I am extra passionate about making sure the meaning of Christmas isn’t usurped by presents. I limit the gifts we give and I place strong emphasis on the faith component and try to amp up excitement surrounding giving to others versus receiving only for ourselves.
Well, in true tell-all fashion, I have to admit, based off of a conversation I had with my five-year-old last night … I thought for a moment we were completely and utterly failing miserably.
I was playing with my daughter in our living room with a nativity scene we brought out and we were talking about Christmas and the conversation went something like this:
“I really like your placement of baby Jesus on the roof of the manger, honey.”
“Thanks, Mommy!” She said as she took him off the roof and put him outside by the cow trough. I laughed.
“Um, Mommy, in this nativity scene, where are all the presents?”
“Well, baby Jesus is the present, honey and you know, Christmas isn’t just about presents …”
“Yes, it is, Mommy!”
“No, honey, it’s about God’s gift to the world and that gift —”
“Is a gift, a present? ”
“Yes! A gift is a present and we give each other presents to represent –”
“Yay, presents! I LOVE presents. I hope I get presents this Christmas.”
It was at that point, I realized I wasn’t going to win any sort of philosophical argument with her while we sat playing with the nativity scene. I decided to switch directions and go with her train of thought and then steer it back to the meaning of Christmas when the time was right. So, I said, “I love presents too, honey, is there something you really want for Christmas this year?”
I cringed as I awaited her answer.
Read the full article in the December issue or click here.