In a few short weeks my wife Linda and I will have a houseful of family members. When we moved to Kellogg, Idaho, in May of 2009 we recognized that we would be leaving several adult children behind. Since that time, our second oldest – Andrea has graduated from college and is living in Idaho as well. But this leaves two of our kids, three grandkids and a son-in-law still back in Iowa. This year we will all be together to celebrate Christmas.
As my wife and I were discussing the upcoming holiday it struck us how blessed we are with our family. Starting with five children of our own, we now number nine. While it will be exciting to be together it could also be daunting when it comes to Christmas gifts. So this year we have set a reasonable budget for gifts and will major on being together. You see, when it comes down to it, there isn't any better gift than sharing life together.
No amount of electronics, or trinkets of any kind can equal the value of relationships. Many splurge on presents during the holidays. Too often the results are holiday bills that multiply credit card debt and linger as the modern day Ghost of Christmas Past. I would encourage you to not put yourself under such stress and strain this holiday season. After all, the most important gift you can give is the gift of yourself. This holiday season be truly present and enjoy one another as family and friends. In the Christian tradition, we are reminded that when God wanted to give the very best to the people of the world – He gave a relationship. For Christians, Christmas is about remembering that God revealed himself through a baby born in Bethlehem. It's always been about presence, not presents.
May your holidays be bright and joy filled as you major on what truly matters.
Remember, if you find the holiday season difficult this year and need someone to talk with, you can always contact us at Mountain View Congregational Church.