Aaaaahhhh, gift giving season. Every year, I find my nosey mind drifting off, wondering about all that is going through the hearts and minds of both the gift givers and the recipients.
Then I usually end up remembering the presents I’ve received since childhood, and my reactions to them. I recall the “pre-present-opening lecture” from my mom before every family Christmas gathering (and birthday party for that matter) when I was young,
“Now Caryn, just remember that no one HAD to get you ANYTHING, so no matter what it is, even if you don’t think you’ll like it, you need to show thankfulness.”
Sigh. “Yes, Mom.”
(Insert bratty 8 year-old girl and 10 year-old boy tone) “Do we REEEEEEEALLY have to do this?” my brother and I whined to our mom as she made us “celebrate” the Advent season. I mean legit Advent – 4 Sunday nights, Bible reading, candle wreath and all.
This was week number two or three, and the whining came right after I plunked through Silent Night on the piano, making more mistakes than there were sheep being watched by shepherds on the night of Jesus’ birth. My brother was rolling his eyes, while my Dad was gluing his eyes to the football game on the muted TV in the room next door.
In reading the Christmas Story, I’m gripped by the element of surprise that landed on the story’s main characters. These were normal people, going about their day, and BOOM! Great news just happens.
Imagine if you were: