First of all…I will be copying this to all three of my blogs. So to you few followers of all…no, you’re not crazy!
Now on with the story….
I can’t find my Christmas spirit this year. I forced myself to put up our tree, hoping that just doing it would help. I still haven’t made my topper yet…but the tree looks nice. I didn’t however find my Christmas spirit by decorating it. Actually it made me a little sadder.
A few nights ago, I went to our community’s Christmas party. The company and the food were wonderful, as usual; but no….I didn’t find my Christmas spirit there either. I came home feeling a little sadder.
Last night, we went out to a very nice dinner with friends. Prime rib, filets, and other yummy things were ordered. There was no tiramisu on the menu…so I skipped dessert. I had a lovely time. We traveled to and fro in a winter wonderland as snow softly fell. I came home with no more Christmas spirit than when I left.
In talking to a few friends…and even reading a few other blogs, I am finding that I am NOT alone with this lack of Christmas spirit this year. My friends and I are VERY fortunate. Our husbands have good jobs, and they work hard. We all have everything we need and much of what we want. And we are smart enough to know how blessed we truly are…and we know that it is all by God’s grace. Which makes
my our lack of Christmas spirit even MORE frustrating. We know why we are celebrating this season. We know that the greatest gift we could EVER receive is one that we have already accepted…the gift of salvation through Christ. So why these feelings? I don’t know. My friends and I have discussed possibilities…we are at a stage where our on children are older and we are likely years away from grandbabies. So perhaps we are missing the magic of Christmas through a small child’s eyes. Christmas is over commercialized….But I don’t think that is it. I long ago threw away notions of giving just to keep up with Joneses…I give for the true JOY of giving, not because I feel obligated to do so. My husband said that I just needed some snow…for which, evil looks were sent his way. (At the time there was no snow on the ground….and I have a real love/hate relationship with snow, but that is a story for another time). Perhaps I am just more than usual missing HOME! Maybe it is just a combination of all those things and more.
Whatever the reason, I have come to the conclusion that my Christmas spirit…or at least that feeling that USUALLY envelopes me…may not show up this year. I may not get the urge to fill my home with the aromas of cookies, cakes and pies baking. I may not unpack the rest of my Christmas decorations. I may not even have many gifts under the tree….or make lots of candy treats for my family and neighbors. And it will be OKAY! I WILL do some baking and I WILL make some Oreo Truffles because my son loves them! But unless something BIG happens soon, I don’t think I will be doing my usual CHRISTMAS CRAZY.
With all of that said….maybe my job this year is to help someone else find their Christmas spirit. While I am truly blessed, I do not live in a happy bubble. I know that many out there are suffering. So instead of just my USUAL Christmas donations, I have decided to actively look for those that “need a little Christmas”. (I know this is turning into a small book…but bear with me…PLEASE)
My first “find”:
I am from NC…so every few days I check out the Charlotte Observer online to see what is going on back home. Today there was an article telling how one of the shelters in Charlotte has a goal of collecting a ton of dry oatmeal by Jan. 31 to help serve the increased need this year. DRY OATMEAL! A relatively inexpensive, easy, nutritious meal. Something that MOST of us take for granted---or even COMPLAIN about---on a cold morning! Since it is NOT convenient for me to donate to that particular shelter AND there are hungry people EVERYWHERE, I have decided to donate some simple dry goods, including oatmeal, to my LOCAL food bank. I hope to make it a regular habit…not just a once-a-year, make myself feel good thing. I CHALLENGE you to do the same AND to ask those you know to do the same. (If you have a blog, please share the challenge there.) I imagine that many of those in need today may have sat down with friends in another Christmas season and ate prime rib or a perfectly cooked filet….and never imagined that they would one day need to ask for a bowl of oatmeal! One day it may be I or YOU or someone you love. It is not this day however. So this day (or this week), I give and thank God that I can!
* I did a quick Google search and found that my little, itsy-bitsy town has its own food bank. I have lived here for 2 1/2 years and had NO idea…so maybe I have allowed myself to live in a happy little bubble!