Celebrate the Gift and the Giver
Shortly after Christmas last year I heard a news story that has been on my mind since. My house was still decorated with all things Santa and Wise Men. We had plates full of Christmas treats that would last us a month. Like every other morning before, I woke up to the news on the TV. My eyes were closed, but my ears were open. I listened without purpose, just trying to realize that it’s time to rise and hopefully shine. The evening before, I had heard through social media of a bad three car accident. It happened near my home. News like this always makes me anxious.
I read that someone had died in a car accident, and I dwelled on the tragedy. My family was all accounted for, but I was curious to know the details and wondered if it were true. Something so devastating should be in the headlines.
What I had heard on the news that morning was not a feel-good story. It was not news of a local car accident. I heard a report on what to do with those Christmas gifts that did not meet expectations. It was a full report, with step-by-step instructions, on how to return an item that someone went to lengths to purchase and gift to you. I asked myself if this is what we are coming to as a world.
I am a very sensitive person. When I receive a gift, it goes straight to my heart. It holds meaning. I also give gifts from the heart. I can’t even pull from memory one single gift that I took back so that I could choose something that I would rather have. I am grateful for all gifts big and small. I consider the giver who put time into thinking of something very special to give to me. A gift comes from the giver’s heart. Gift receiving should not be about your expectations.
There was once a very special person in my life that was hard to buy for. More often than not, she returned every gift I gave her. I loved her dearly, but I also dreaded choosing a gift for her. The feeling of dread and doom for Christmas shopping started in October. I would think hard for months about the perfect Christmas gift. Every year I had hoped she would love and cherish the gift I chose just for her. Most times it ended in disappointment for me.
Being a gift giver should not be stressful. The biggest news story of the day should not be how to return gifts. Instead, we should think of the giver and how much time and energy went into finding the perfect gift. That person thought enough to decide upon a special gift and then went to lengths to make that gift a reality. It speaks for our feelings, our love, respect, or thankfulness. We choose gifts according to one’s likes and interests. It shows that we have paid attention to another’s life. Our gift celebrates those things. We choose gifts that remind us of our times spent together. The gift is meant to invoke memories and keep those times close to our hearts.
I was thinking that maybe the news report should have been a lesson on how to appreciate a gift and its giver. We could use a little more of that in today’s world.