Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

If you want to experience the true meaning of Christmas, give something to someone who can offer nothing in return. Toni Sorenson

Twas the week before Christmas and all through the house… Here we are the week before Christmas. Last week my husband and I went looking for a Christmas tree and they were sold out. Snooze you lose, and everywhere we went they were sold out too. Our daughter agreed to set her tree upstairs. My daughter and grandson helped decorate the tree, and he had the most fun. When we plugged in the lights his little face lit up. At twenty months this is a fun Christmas for him and because of him, it is a fun Christmas for us.

Christmas is about spending time with those we love and reflecting on the meaning of Christmas. There is magic in Christmas and it comes from the heart. The message of Christmas is buried in gifts and hustle and bustle. But underneath all the decorations, gifts, and frivolity is the meaning of Christmas.

Every Christmas in many homes is the hope that this Christmas will be better. Where there is discord, we hope there will be healing. That family members not talking to each other will reconcile. That peace and forgiveness will be the order of the day.

We expect a lot out of Christmas. We travel long distances to be with family in the hopes we can bask in the feeling of togetherness we once had, or never quite attained. We often want things from Christmas we can’t quite manage at other times of the year. The problem with expectations is often the people we want to meet our expectations don’t know what they are, and we can’t even put them into words.

The Christmas spirit is a spirit of giving and forgiving. James Cash Penney

Unmet expectations are one of the dangers of Christmas, but if we realize perfection is not possible, and we should only put expectations on ourselves and not push them onto others we might have a chance of meeting them. We can expect ourselves to be grateful, kind, cheerful, loving, understanding, forgiving, and patient, and if we can manage it, others might manage it too.

Christmas is truly a time to expect more from ourselves and less from others, and by doing this we might feel the way we want to feel. If we can forgive ourselves and others for not being perfect, and love ourselves and others warts and all then we give ourselves and others space to find our way to being the best we can be. We can have our expectations so high they can’t possibly be met and by doing so end up bitter. This is not in keeping with the message of Christmas which is goodwill toward all.

One of the problems we face in life is expecting to get without giving, but if we change that to giving without getting then we can put a smile on someone else’s face instead of waiting for someone to put one on ours. We can be generous with compliments, time, and money. We take charge of our lives and by placing fewer expectations on others, we allow them to exceed our expectations, and that is a win for everyone.

Can we love ourselves and others even when we don’t deserve it, especially if we don’t deserve it, isn’t that the message of Christmas? Can we spread love, hope, and joy this Christmas?

Christmas is a season for kindling the fire of hospitality in the hall, the genial flame of charity in the heart. Washington Irving

Christmas is a time when you get homesick – even when you’re home. Carol Nelson

The smells of Christmas are the smells of childhood. Richard Paul Evans

Thank you for reading this post. Please come back and read some more and have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

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One thought on “Are we living the message of Christmas and spreading love, hope, and joy?

  1. Thanks Belynda, for a timely reminder of what is important at this time of the year.
    Many good wishes to you and your near and dear ones.

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