It’s that time of year again. The time when I look at Christmas shopping and consider what I am going to do. I’m late in making this post (and thinking about shopping) because for many it began months ago if not last January in the sales. Presents bought, wrapped, posted if required or ready to pop under the tree. Don’t even ask me about decorations… It’s like Blackpool on some streets and has been for weeks (if you don’t know what Blackpool is I googled it for you.)
We are going to buy our tree today (probably) so I am not saying don’t decorate, don’t shop, don’t purchase presents. I don’t think ‘thou shall not buy Christmas presents or put up sparkly lights’ was in the 10 commandments last time I looked. I just want to stop and think.
The just get involved with the poor and know their issues,
but the wicked cannot comprehend such concerns.
Is it wicked to want to show people you love them? Is it wicked to want a time of year when families come together and celebrate? Is it wicked to spend money I don’t have on things people don’t need? Is it wicked to look at ‘shiny’ objects and be coaxed into wanting them? When I look around it seems this season is a time we make excuses for indulging ourselves. When I was young big presents were saved for Christmas, but it was a time when we seemed to make do with a lot less and appreciate a lot more.
I reblogged a piece the other day and I am linking it again because it really sums up my heart. I have to confess every year I intend to use one of those catalogues and every year I put it off til it’s too late. When we first got married for several years we made a commitment to only spend 10 pounds on each other, we had to buy 5 items and only one could be chocolate. It was fabulous, (admittedly it was cheaper then so maybe could say 20 pounds now) we spent time thinking carefully, scouring shops to find 5 things that the other person would love. When our daughters came along we carried that on with them, I’d take Beckee shopping while Mark had Rachel and then we’d swap kids buying presents for the other two. The gifts might have been cheap, but the time together was quality. They didn’t get a huge pile of presents from us, nor did Santa call, but it was a time we spent each evening during Advent talking about Christ and little family rituals opening the calendar, lighting a candle, praying together.
Nostalgia? Perhaps but I keep coming back to that verse in Proverbs and other verses and Jesus’ words and thinking I really need to be aware of how much I spend and what I spend it on. I need to remember that it’s not about impressing people by how much I spend but loving people extravagantly in ways that last.