So much of the anticipation of Christmas for parents, is the excitement of watching our children open their gifts on Christmas morning. There is just something about the joy that radiates from every fiber of their being when they unwrap something they asked Santa for at the mall last week. It is a confirmation in their little brains that they matter, that despite all the mischievous things they might have gotten in trouble for over the past year, they are still good little boys and girls and this is proof!
It is definitely heartbreaking as a parent to not be able to provide that desperately longed-for present that is wished for breathlessly and prayed for fervently in night time prayers. Oh that there would never be a disappointed child on Christmas morning! There is something so precious about a child on bended knee next to their bed, pleading: “And dear Gawd, pleeeeeeze help Santa bring me a Major Tom Astronaut this year” or “Dear Lawd, you know I’ve twied to be good. Pwease tell Santa to find me a Baby Teardrop with matching teardrop pajamas!” It’s enough to bring a tear to your own eye…
As wonderful as Christmas morning can be, with all the bouncing bows, ripping ribbons, wrapping paper tearing (or folding, if you’re like my mother~”Save the paper!”) and boxes flying, it’s one hundred times more meaningful if our children understand the real reason for the season. It is in the spirit of giving that we honor God, who gave us His son. It is with love in our hearts that we sit back and watch our children open their gifts. How does God feel when we accept the gift of Christ as our Savior? Like a parent on Christmas, watching their child open a gift of love and respond with joy.
One of my favorite ornaments which I look for specifically every year as I decorate our tree, is a bell with a painting on it of Santa, bowing his head at the manger of baby Jesus. For some reason, that ornament just speaks really loudly to my heart each Christmas. It is in acknowledging God’s gift of the babe in the manger that our hearts can fully appreciate the giving and getting of gifts at Christmas…His was the first and greatest gift ever given.
So with all the hustle and bustle of the season, let’s not forget to impress on our children the gift of baby Jesus to mankind and His presence in our hearts as we open our presents this year.
How will we make sure that Jesus' presence takes precedence over the presents this year?
Ann Van De Water, Author~ MOMMY MEMOIRS
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