The Joy Of Giving
Reogged from Authentic Joy
Christmas holidays as a child were spent at my grandparents’ house. The first sign that it was Christmas was the opening of the ‘special cupboard’. Out of that cupboard would emerge a smorgasbord of treats to delight our taste buds. There would be Peardrax, marshmallows, cashew nuts, nougat, chocolates and of course a tin of Danish cookies.
The next event on the Christmas agenda would be the decoration of the Christmas tree. Grandpa was in charge of this affair. He would delegate tasks and oversee the entire production starting with the assembly of the plastic tree with the fake tinsel snow (This is the Caribbean. Ain’t no white Christmas here.) The grand finale would be the turning on of the multicoloured lights that blinked in time to a music box and we would all sit back and take it in with warm hearts and twinkling eyes.
But, like most children, what I was most excited about was the presents! It was all a countdown to the opening of the presents on Christmas Day. Everything else was just the supporting acts to that main event. I could hardly sleep on Christmas Eve as the adrenaline pumped through my veins.
Then the big day would come! The final hurdle between us and the presents was praying with Granny. We would dutifully clasp our hands and close our eyes while butterflies danced on the inside and then….. we would tear into the pile of gifts under the tree!
This pattern repeated year after year from as far back as I can remember. But soon I started to notice another pattern; by the end of Christmas Day I would have this sinking feeling in my heart. It was a strange feeling. I couldn’t define it for years until one year it hit me – the presents never lived up to the anticipation. It was kind of like going to a movie that you were looking forward to seeing all year and it turned out to be crap. I had an expectation that the presents would bring me euphoric joy and they never did. That was the day I discovered the vanity of material things. They cannot deliver joy no matter how big or expensive.
Christmas taught me that it is really and truly better to give than to receive.
As Christ came not to receive but to give His life so that we would gain eternal life, let us celebrate the reason for the season by giving to the less fortunate and showing our loved ones how much they are treasured.
May your Christmas be joyful!
A note from Barb: Thank you for sharing your journey, Matik. I definitely enjoy the giving more than the recieving. Seeing the delight on a loved ones face gives me insight into what God feels when he gives good gifts to us. Merry Christmas 🎄