I've always shied away from cards and gifts that say "Jesus is the reason for the season." Not that there's anything wrong with that saying. I guess I just feel like everybody knows it already. It's the celebration of his birthday after all. I don't need my Christmas cards to remind anyone of that. But over the last few weeks, I've needed reminding myself. I had lost sight of the reason for the season. I was preoccupied with what my kids would like to find under the tree and the fact that I wouldn't be able to buy every single thing on their lists. But the sad thing is, their lists were in my head. The boys have asked for only a few things...airsoft guns, a game for their DS, and a silver dollar (they both collect coins). And Julianna, for the last several weeks, only wants "a dog that walks." (Luckily she means a toy and not a real dog. We already have two of those.) But my list was full of electronics for the boys and sparkly, pink things for Jules. And I was beating myself up over the fact that I couldn't provide all their (well, my) heart's desires. Until last week when I voiced my concerns to my friend Kathy. She didn't say much, but her just listening and me being able to share it, helped so much. And for the last several days, God's been reminding me of the reason, His reason, for the season. Like when my sister told me the story of a 6th grader at a local middle school asking for laundry detergent, toilet paper, and dishes and silverware for her family on her Christmas wish list. And the outpouring of support for that child and others. And when I went to the church giving tree to pick a child for my class to support and received two gifts the very next day from the parents of my students. And I'm sure that by Friday, our little one year old boy who likes balls and puzzles will be well supported by all of the families in our class. And then there's the fact that our school (with 50 students) has collected well over 100 books to donate to Books for Tots. Giving, sharing, loving. That's the reason we're here. That's the reason for this season and every season.
So on Christmas morning, my kids will be spoiled because not only will they have a warm house and clean clothes and an amazing Christmas meal, they will each have three lovely gifts and a stocking full of treats. They will have two loving parents who are willing and able to provide for them. They will have smiles on their faces not just because they are unwrapping presents, but because they have people and a place that make them feel safe and loved. And they will know, because their mommy knows, the reason for the season.