December 24

  

Today's quotation:

Christmas reminds us we are not alone.  We are not unrelated atoms, jouncing and ricocheting amid aliens, but are a part of something, which holds and sustains us.  As we struggle with shopping lists and invitations, compounded by December's bad weather, it is good to be reminded that there are people in our lives who are worth this aggravation, and people to whom we are worth the same.  Christmas shows us the ties that bind us together, threads of love and caring, woven in the simplest and strongest way within the family.

Donald E. Westlake

Today's Meditation:

It's so important to keep focused on the reasons for which we're truly doing things.  In the case of Christmas, we do most of what we do because, as Donald says, "there are people in our lives who are worth this aggravation."

Christmas truly is about other people in our lives.  It's our culture's call to focus on the needs and wants of others for a short time, a call to focus on generosity more than on getting, a call to share all that we are rather than keeping everything to ourselves.  It also opens our minds and hearts to see that our "family" consists of much more than we think it does, many more people than those who were born into the same genetic pool as we were.  During this time more than any other time of the year, we're very aware of the people who are "alone" in this world, and it's important to us to invite people who don't have anyone to share the holiday with over to share it with us.

We definitely need other people in our lives, and we need them not just for what they can give to us, but also for what we can give to them.  We all need to be able to give to others if we're to be fulfilled in life, and this holiday provides us with a glimpse of just what it feels like to give unconditionally.

The trick, though, is to try not to forget that feeling as the holiday fades into the past, for when we forget the lessons that Christmas brings us, or even when we let them slip into the background of our lives, the rest of our year becomes crowded with the need to get, and we forget the power of giving that allows us to feel good about ourselves as we share the love and caring with the people with whom we share this planet.  If we can keep alive the memory of the power of giving, we'll realize that this is the power that can most help us to lead happy, healthy, useful lives during the time that we spend here. 

Questions to consider:

What kinds of lessons does Christmas bring to you?

How long does it take for the lessons of Christmas to fade for most people?

How might we keep these feelings with us the entire year long?

For further thought:

Christmas! The very word brings joy to our hearts. No matter how we may dread the rush, the long Christmas lists for gifts and cards to be bought and given-- when Christmas Day comes there is still the same warm feeling we had as children, the same warmth that enfolds our hearts and our homes.


Joan Winmill Brown

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