Season Greetings

by

Some of the greatest gifts received at Christmas are not necessarily found under the Christmas tree. The ones I’m talking about cost nothing, and yet they create the most amount of happiness. They are good for the soul as well as for your overall health. I’m referring to the “gifts” of love, forgiveness and understanding. Such gifts are the ones that come directly from the heart rather than from your wallet.

That gift of love is one thing that we all can give to anybody. It’s something to which we all have unlimited access no matter what our income is.

Another “gift” that’s appropriate for anyone and costs us nothing is “forgiveness.” There is nothing that feels as good as forgiving someone who may have hurt you in the past. When you are carrying a lot of baggage, it wears you down. Even worse, most of the time when you are upset with someone, that person may not even realize it. So, this year, why not make a phone call forgiving someone who may have hurt you? It doesn’t matter who it is– a parent, brother, sister, friend or neighbor. If you feel uncomfortable making a phone call, take a few minutes and write a letter instead. You will be happy you did.

Writing to Santa

Even without all that excess “baggage,” there’s a lot of stress at this time of year. People are busy and the pressure from advertising influences people to spend more and more money. That pressure is designed to make one feel obligated to buy gifts. Now, of course, gifts are great. But they don’t always come from the heart. You mostly just purchase them simply because you feel you should.

When you find yourself in that place where you are giving just because you feel you have to do so, it’s probably time to remind yourself that the only thing that children really care about is that their parents get along and are happy.

I will always remember Christmas as being a time of love and joy, a time to enjoy the present moment and to really make others, especially children, feel loved.

When I was a child, Mom would always start Christmas morning off with a prayer, making sure we appreciated, and were grateful for, everything that we had in our lives. She would also remind us that not everyone was as privileged as we were. Yes, we may have gotten a gift or two, something that we really needed but it was never about that. It was more about the family getting together with friends and relatives. It was about having a meal together and singing for an hour or two. We grew up with music in our homes and to this day my family will never miss a chance to get together and sing.

Linda and I want to wish all of you a very Merry Christmas and may God bless us all as we move into 2016 knowing that we can and will create extraordinary lives for ourselves and others.