So what does Christmas really mean to me? To be honest, I don’t have a definite answer since I haven’t been asked this for a while, but maybe now is the time to have a real look and think at what I do make of it.
Up until around the age of 10, Christmas was still a magical experience, thanks to the fact that I still believed in Father Christmas. Yes, up until the age of 10 I was still a believer, and looking back on it, I can’t believe how I managed to get away with it in school. Everyone else quite clearly knew that he wasn’t real but I can’t remember anyone not playing along for my sake! Whereas other kids found out from their parents (sometimes with upsetting consequences), I reached the conclusion myself and after a quick confirmation from my parents that in fact it had been them putting the presents there for all those years, I was none the worse off.
Since then, Christmas wasn’t the same, but not necessarily in a bad way. True, all of the fantasy and (most of) the excitement had gone, but there was one thing that everyone still looks forward to, no matter what age-the presents. Saying this though, we in this country really do have a lot to look forward to when compared to those in poorer parts of the world. They may look forward to presents, yet receive nothing-an upsetting thing to think of when we have so much. Without fail, each year, my mum will say something along the lines of `Just think of all the people who get nothing at Christmas` in one context or another, and whilst I normally don’t respond with much, I have to be thankful to her for mentioning it, as it certainly does make a difference to how you see what you have and teaches you to be grateful for it.
Christmas day our house isn’t really anything different to anyone else’s, with us most often going to my auntie’s house for Christmas lunch. This also serves as a kind of family reunion too, having not seen some of my family for the best part of a year (mainly because they all live so far away). Everyone always enjoys this occasion, everyone gets on well and we all have a good laugh, apart from one thing: a certain two cousins of mine. They don’t cause any (visible) upset on the day but it always astonishes everyone (apart from their parents) as to how many presents they receive and how little attention or thankfulness they seem to give to the people have bought them. I deliberately mentioned being thankful for what you receive earlier on, because when you are not, this is what happens. My dad in particular thinks that it is obscene (his words) and it really is, most of these presents will not be used again or at all.
Anyway, not wanting to end on a bad note, if you only take one thing from this post let it be this: whatever your situation this Christmas, be thankful for what you have. It is all too easy to become greedy and unappreciative detracting from the real meaning of Christmas-thanking God for his ultimate gift of Jesus.