The Christmas holiday represents so many various aspects to everyone that it is difficult to encompass it into a single article. Children are excited not only for Santa Claus but at a young age they experience the thrill of buying loving gifts for the people in their life.
Adults tend to experience a similar thrill, especially when they anticipate Christmas for their children. Families develop Christmas traditions which they silently hope that their children will pass on down to their children. Family Christmas traditions can be accidentally created with a child’s enthusiasm, a cute antic performed by the child that the family readily adopts as part of annual Christmas traditions.
We like to believe that Christmas is the time for miracles. We center so much around the “Christmas miracle.” A Christmas miracle can range from the smile on an old curmudgeon’s face to someone special returning home to share the holiday with their family. The notion of a Christmas miracle keeps warm glows in the heart and provides hopes in the mind of many. It is likely that there aren’t any more miracles during the Christmas season than any other time of year, but that we are simply more receptive to them, or at least the thought of them, at Christmastime.
There is ultimate magic in the glow of Christmas lights and the hustle and bustle of Christmas activity. Christmas trees adorn most houses, and if you live in the right climate, there is hope for a white Christmas after all. Yet for every magical Christmas moment there is a Christmas tragedy on someone’s doorstep.
So many people complain about the lost meaning of Christmas and the loss of Christmas spirit. For every gift that is wrapped, every special adornment, there is opportunity, the opportunity to reach out and become someone’s Christmas miracle. For every complaint, there is an action that can alleviate the complaint. Christmas is about more than the opening of presents and the arrival of Santa. Christmas is the one time of year we all can reach a little further into out hearts and pull out our very own version of Christmas enlightenment.
But alas, there are obligations to fill and those last minute gifts to buy and the crowds to fight so that as the big day finally approaches we have every last detail of our Christmas morning covered. Yet we are not immune to how blessed we are as junior unwraps his thirtieth gift and the thousands of dollars that went into this year’s preparations pays off in an hour or two of Christmas bliss. Then what?
Imagine for a moment, the scope of Christmas miracles if each and every one of us went ahead and made sure to perform just one Christmas miracle on someone else’s behalf. Imagine the impact it would carry far beyond December 25th, and the long reaching effects a sudden increase in Christmas miracles could provide for the terminally ill, the homeless, the down trodden, the hopeless, and the lost.
Imagine for a moment, the long range impact these Christmas miracles could have on the state of the world, and the state of the human spirit. Three hundred and sixty five days a year we know of, speak of, and are fully aware of a multitude of causes or individuals that desperately are calling out for help. What if the majority of us only ignored these issues three hundred and sixty four days out of the year? Wow. We could pull off a national Christmas miracle. That’s really exciting.
Along with providing a Christmas miracle for the individual or institution or situation of our choice, imagine once again the long term impact that it would have on our own sense of Christmas spirit. How much more incredible will the spread under the tree become when we know that our family donated the much needed time and energy required to remedy someone else’s loss, and that because of us our Christmas joy was being matched by someone who ultimately wouldn’t have had much of a Christmas at all.
How much brighter do the Christmas lights glow when they are powered by the spirit that truly is Christmas? How much more do the gifts under the tree mean when they are inspired by honest devotion and a genuine desire to create a better place in the world.
These sorts of traditions are just as important to pass down to your family as the way a tree is decorated or caroling on Christmas eve. These sorts of traditions have long range impact and create around us a stronger spirit of Christmas that simply can’t be purchased. These are the traditions that the original Saint Nicholas had in mind when he opted to leave gifts to the nation’s poor children and remain anonymous in the process.
The dazzling Christmas spirit that we are all chronically in search of every year is ironically right at our fingertips. When we feel devoid of the Christmas spirit, it is really very simple to engage our own new traditions in the effort to find that spirit again. Your children will recognize the power in giving and be able to carry that tradition far beyond their childhood years. And it all begins with the simple desire to fill an empty place in the Christmas spirit.