After many days of too much food, too much wine, too much toys, too much running back and forth to the toy store, too much confusion about what to buy for my wife, too much exhausting driving on the snow, mental turmoil about confusion on gifts and cards for different people, running back to the toy store to return the toys which the kids didn't like or wasn't doing what it was supposed to do as per the claims on its cover, I am ready to take a deep breath and do a reality check.
Both my wife and I working on full time jobs, with 2 little kids to take care of, as we entered the month of December, I dreamt about the upcoming Christmas holidays as a time to slow down, relax and possibly catch up some of my reading. Unfortunately the reality was the opposite. Now the Christmas is over and I have no energy left to spare and feeling drained emotionally and spiritually. And now I am hoping to recuperate during the two days off for the New Year!
When I went for shopping, seeing crowded shoppers frantically running around the shops looking for gifts, I didn't think this country was in a recession. I found that the commercialization of this holiday is a huge success. I am also a victim of it. I feel trapped.
After all the hectic days, I am wondering out loud, where was Christ in all the busyness? I seldom thought about Him. I was worried about a whole lot of things that I didn't have time to think about Jesus's love. But it's true that He was still loving me while I wasn't even aware of it.
It is one thing that it brought joy to my heart when I saw the excitement in the eyes of kids when they opened the gifts, but it's another thing that I conveniently forgot about the many parents around the world who can't even afford food to keep their children alive. I feel that I live in abundance and the multiple choices around me often confuses me - the options to chose food, drink, dress, toys etc. I guess the people who have no much choices have little or no confusion in their life.
I feel that Christmas brings anxiety and tension to many people instead of joy, peace and love. Many families and individuals are worried that they have no enough money to afford gifts. We have come so far that the 'gift' is an obligation now. We almost forgot the definition of 'gift' itself. We no longer like to receive freely, we want to 'pay back' as soon as possible.
I didn't really enjoy Christmas because anything which wouldn't let me slow down and contemplate on the issues of life and love Christ has offered to us, it's not an enjoyment. Instead, I was drifted away. I gave myself up for pleasing people in an obligatory way.
There were lot of things which I had been setting aside to do during these holidays (such as burning some home videos to DVDs). Needless to say that they are still undone.
On the top of all these, now I realize that it would take at least an year to lose the extra pounds I have gained from over eating during these few days!
I didn't enjoy the snow, instead I cursed it because it tried to slow me down. I don't like anything which slows me down when I have so much things to 'do'.
Is it time to think outside the normal craziness of Christmas? May be doing it in a different, 'out of the norm' way? May be doing nothing but thinking about what Christmas really means? May be setting aside the obligatory, forced, 'feel trapped' kind of celebrations and just love one needy person?