Tags: Army, Bell, blessings, Christmas, depressed, economic, family, for, greatful, greedy, growing-up, holidays, is, Jesus, joy, joyous, kids, meaningful, most, of, poor, real, reason, ringers, sad, Salvation, season, selfish, shopping, thankful, the, time, times, tough, wonderful, year
It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year
Is it really the “Most Wonderful Time Of The Year”? I recently “really” doubted this earlier this month while volunteering to do a shift with a couple of my co-workers for the Salvation Army at a local (Morris, Minnesota) store. I grew up passing those bell ringers all the time before my family went shopping each holiday season. I finally volunteered doing this for the first time last year at a local grocery store. My co-worker and I enjoyed it so much that we decided to do it again this holiday (2011) season. It’s an interesting perspective when ringing the bell watching (staying “still” during the “busy” holiday season is a lot different than “participating” in going with the “busy” and “hustle” of the crowds of people in this increasingly “commercialized” holiday!) shoppers pass by. This year my co-worker and I noticed how “sad” people were this year compared to last year. Is it because of the so-called “tougher” economic times (despite better reports this year than last year when it came to shopping??)? Is it because certain individuals going through some personal challenges (e.g. financial challenges, flood victims in the Philippines, those without love ones due to health, past away, or unfortunate circumstances, etc..)?…
When my parents immigrated here to the US in the early 70’s, we didn’t have much. We had a small two bedroom apartment in Oakdale, Minnesota. We had one bed that most of us slept together while my younger brother slept in a crib in the other bedroom. As we got older, we got “better” financially and moved to a townhouse in St. Paul. We couldn’t afford a Christmas tree, so I remember finding a big branch of a tree and we took it home to make a “makeshift” (we stuck it in a bucket of toys to stand it easier) Christmas tree. Then as we got older as kids my parents were able to afford to buy “better” gifts. I would look forward to opening Christmas gifts, but would then go “downhill” if I didn’t get the presents “I wanted” (see selfish). Is it because?…
Have we lost focus of the “true” meaning of CHRISTmas?…
…Jesus, “He’s” the “real” reason for the season. Find out how He is and this will help all of us find that joy (e.g. “count your blessings” -not just Thanksgiving!-before you go to bed, which I do during my nightly time of meditation) throughout “every” season!
Tags: Christmas, family, healing, holidays, past, peace, philosophical, political, prayer, reconciliation, relationships, Scrooge, Thanksgiving
With the Christmas holidays coming, people will be “looking forward” to getting together with love ones –family members. Is this really true? I mean, do we all actually look forward to seeing other family members? Maybe some, but I don’t think it’s true for all based on people I’ve talked with the past 2 months.
Before Thanksgiving last month, I ran (location is anonymous to protect the privacy and identity of this lady) into this lady and I asked her-“Got any big plans for the up-coming Thanksgiving holiday?”-with a smile eager to get a “positive” answer. She responded, “Well, I won’t call it big, but just getting together with family”. Then she went on with a unhappy (less enthusiastic) voice, “We just plan to get together and eat, then can’t wait to we just get out!”. She explained to me that family get-togethers are not really something to “look forward” to due to the “hostility” amongst her family. I can understand where she’s coming from as I too have seen similar “hostility” amongst my own family-relatives, which is sad to say. If you read this, I would love your prayer for peace-reconcilliation within my family-relatives. Salamat (thanks)! A close of friend of mine, who is now deceased, once shared with me about how his family don’t get along because of different beliefs on some “philosophical” (e.g. political) issues.
A couple of weeks later, I chatted with another lady about her own family. She has a sister that just brings up the “negative” in family conversations. We talked about there seems to be at least one in every family. The family gets together with all smiles and there seems to be just one that brings up the “negative” (e.g. past ) that majority just want to not bring up!
I then was reminded of the recent theatrical performance (“Gospel According to Scrooge”) I saw earlier this month in Alexandria, Minnesota. Scrooge “bah hum bug” people during the holidays because of his traumatized past-father was sent to jail because of financial bankruptcy before Christmas ..
I’m learning in life that individuals act the way they are because of past circumstances and they take (e.g. grudge) that with them; thus “negative” behavior towards others around them. We “positive” people need to learn how to understand their situation and be patient with them (e.g. take time to listen to them). Just by doing this can bring healing to them to have them just “open-up”. Then I highly recommend praying with them for healing afterwards.
There was a scene in the play where the family was all cheery and happy until a relative (Uncle Scrooge) shows up, but was changed because of prayers of his family..
Relationships can be restored through prayer (e.g. healing from past wounds) and hard work! It’s not going to be easy, but don’t give up!