Thursday, December 20, 2012

The gift of time

I’ve been enjoying the preparation time for the Christmas holiday, as I always do. There is something about Advent, the spiritual preparation for Christmas, as well as the material preparations in the form of purchases of gifts and food. I am always reminded of how privileged we are at this time of year especially. We have what we need and more. It is actually becoming quite difficult to know what to tell others when they ask what I want for Christmas. And that is true of very many people I know. We don’t really need much more than we have in the materialistic sense. Of course it’s always nice to give and to receive gifts—that’s part of the holiday spirit and what the season is about—but it’s not about how much gifts cost. It’s the thought that counts; we think of others and they think of us. My colleagues and I exchange small gifts each year (we’ve been doing this for years now)—spice tea, Christmas candy, small Christmas decorations, candle-holders, and the like. There have also been a lot of get-togethers with friends this month; I’ve preferred these personal gatherings to the impersonal Christmas work parties, which are usually too large and too loud. Always nice to get together for dinner for a few hours with good friends, or for a coffee break--with time to indulge in good conversation, something that is worth gold in these days of quick efficient communication and rushed activities.  

The gift of time. If we manage to give that to each other, we’ve accomplished something of worth. I think it is the best gift we can give each other. To know that someone wants to take the time to meet us, to spend a few hours with us, to go deeper than surface conversation—those are amazing gifts. I think more people need to know that they are valued by others. Unfortunately, sometimes even in the best of circumstances, there are some who do not feel worthy of the attention of others. They are good people, special people, kind people, but they suffer from lack of self-confidence that holds them back and makes them choose what is often not good for them. I can think of two instances where this is the case, both involving young people. My hope for them is that the warmth of the Christmas season seeps into them and makes them truly understand how much they are loved. 

No comments:

Post a Comment