Is it really the “Most Wonderful Time Of The Year “?

It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year
http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/v/gFtb3EtjEic?version=3&hl=en_US&rel=0

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..)?…

George Bailey’s prayer
http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/v/vRn26I2Bzd8?version=3&hl=en_US

Is it because of the “pagan” origins of Christmas (as we are uncertain the date of Jesus’ actually day of birth, but that doesn’t matter)?…

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?…

Making Room for the Unexpected – Inspirational Videos
http://media.salemwebnetwork.com/godtube/resource/mediaplayer/5.6/player.swf

Have we lost focus of the “true” meaning of CHRISTmas?…

The Christmas Story – as told by the cutest kids! – Cute Video
http://media.salemwebnetwork.com/godtube/resource/mediaplayer/5.6/player.swf

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!

Ever felt you were a dissappointment?

“Son, I’m very disappointed with you!” Ever heard this before or something similar? ..from your parents, authoritative adults figure, etc… A father has a right to be disappointed with you if you did something wrong (e.g. getting spanked for disrespecting my dad in front of my friends as I kid) in his eyes, but does that mean he still loves you? Most “good” fathers will say-“yes, of course”, but there are some or many out there that doesn’t communicate that love. For example, I’ve had friends that were “physically” abused. When I hear stories like this, I get more grateful of my “imperfect” loving father. My father really didn’t tell me he loved me, but he “manly” showed it by his actions (e.g. made me breakfast in the morning before going to school, give me fatherly advice on life, etc..).

What about you? How did your father show his “manly” love to you? What was or has been your favorite father-son time?

They may not be really mad as you think, but they just don’t show that kind of love your looking for. Thus, one might “hide in the cave” thinking their father is still mad at them. Some might stay disappointed with you for the wrong reason, which is where you need to know where your Heavenly Father stands. How would you know where your Heavenly Father think about you? Well, I recommend seeking His answer through His Word. It’s hard to please your father or just anybody because no one is perfect. We all have high expectations from each other. For example, when I graduated from college, my mother shared my father’s disappointment where I was going with my college education. Fortunately, I paid my own way through college, so my father didn’t get too mad. I just shook my head without no sadness and just lifted my head up knowing that my Heavenly Father isn’t. Why, it’s because I remember His Word..

10 Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ. …15 But when God, who set me apart from my mother’s womb and called me by his grace, was pleased 16 to reveal his Son in me…-Galatians 1

You see when I became a Christian my first year in college, I became a follower of Christ and not “man”. My mom was “disappointed” when I got water baptized my 3rd year in college because of our “religious” Catholic up-bringing. It’s over 10+ years later that my parents are no longer “disappointed” with my choices I made during college. They learned to accept it as I’m still their son in their flesh. They have seen how I’ve grown “positively” too as I credit my Christian walk. I”m not saying, I do everything “good”, but I’m doing a lot “better” then I was before I became a Christian (see on-going testimony).

However, it wasn’t like this growing-up. When I didn’t know the Lord (I did know “of” Him, but didn’t have that personal Heavenly Father to Son relationship). When a “close one” (older adult) was very critical of things (e.g. my way of dressing ) I did growing-up, I would grow to have a lower self-esteem. However, this “criticism” actually made me “work harder” in things I did. As similar to my dad, this particular “older adult” showed love in a different (e.g. “treated” me out many times) way. I was very quiet and shy most of my years growing-up. I think it was mostly because of my “negative” experience at home, school, workplace, etc.. Each has some long stories, which I can do another blog post for another time. Overall, I didn’t get much affirmation or positive remarks on what I did. I probably got more encouragement from my workplace and playing sports (I had my share of “negativity” too) then at home. My family was great, but it’s a different culture than America. Thus, my expectations through my comparing or envying others made it difficult. We are all blessed in different ways. That is why I’ve learned to list things I’m thankful each night before going to bed. It helps me not focus on my challenges of disappointments in any given day in life as I give it up in prayer. How have you dealt or deal with the “negativity” spoken or acted upon you? Just ignore it (see Chihuahua Puppy Barking Like a Wolf )

more..
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