I have been thinking as I am sure all of us have about Christmas and all the things I need to do and buy. This year is a Christmas on a budget... the tightest budget we have ever had to work with. But that is not stressing me out, in fact it makes me feel relieved in some strange unexpected way. There seems to be less importance put on what and how many gifts we buy and more on the fact that this year we will be spending Christmas with our families down South.
My friend Xangelle, just posted a question on her blog about Christmas memories, and something that struck me was that what I remembered was time with my family, not the gifts that I received. I have so many great memories of visiting with cousins that we didn't get to see very often, going to our grandparents house full of anticipation not for the gifts as much as to be with family. Building igloos with my dad outside.... in fact one year we went to a youth weekend retreat and my dad was the guest speaker and he made the most wicked snow fort EVER.... like it had tunnels and slides and was just pure genius..... I will never forget that. Baking with my mom and just the general peace I feel and felt whenever I am in her presence. Setting the table that stretched across our entire living room because so many family members were coming. Playing in the basement with our cousins then our nieces and nephews..... these are memories I cherish always.
Family is what God created, that is what He was looking for when He created the earth and the animals and Adam and Eve. He longed for relationship. He longs for us to realize He is our Father and not some removed diaty sitting on His throne beyond our reach. He longs for us to look forward to spending time with Him. He already gave us the perfect gift.... LIFE... and freedom to enter His presence anytime, anywhere. What a gift. I hope the gifts that we do give our girls....besides the practical underwear and toothbrushes..... comes from our heart. That they would be gifts that would instill in them some idea of how much we love them and how much we want the best for them. The best gift we can give them is teaching them of their Father, who speaks to them and they can hear His voice. To teach them to understand the importance and significance of family and that baby Jesus grew up and died so we may have life.