The Cost of Christmas

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Throughout the years, I have developed an opinion about Christmas and the way I view it. We are taught at an early age about the meaning of Christmas and the reason for the season, but as I grow older, I have realized that most of our motives behind Christmas no longer reflect Jesus’s birth. More kids know about Santa than Jesus. We stress over decorations and food. Presents are a huge focal point. The greedy day of Black Friday shows blatantly that we have lost our direction when it comes to Christmas. During this time of year, it seems I constantly hear..

“What do you want for Christmas?”

“What is Santa bringing you?”

“That cost too much!”

“This doesn’t cost enough.”

Before I go on, let me clear up how THANKFUL I AM for presents I have gathered and how much I love giving gifts, but I also believe we get too caught up. The cost of an item should not have a value at Christmas. The reason for giving it should mean more. Consider the reason behind Christmas, Jesus. God did not look at us and say “This cost too much. I am not going to give them my son.” God did not care about too little or too much. He knew in his heart the reason for giving his son and he let this be his motive.

” For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16

God gave his son to us. Do you realize that cost? The ultimate price was paid so that we could be saved.

The cost was not the concern.

A few years ago I learned through a trying experience what Christmas and the holidays are about. With no house during the holiday season and school not even out yet, I learned how much I had taken for granted this beautiful time of the year. Christmas is about having people around you who love you and taking advantage of this incredible, but short, time you have with them. It is about staying up until 3 am writing Christmas cards because that is all you have, but somehow words, would be enough. It had been too long since you had said thank you. Christmas is about making sacrifices and waiting by someone’s side until they were strong enough to go on. Christmas is about watching movies all night with your grandmother and random Walmart trips on Christmas Eve. It is about playing Dirty Santa with a youth group that saved your life. It is not about the gag gifts, but the facial expressions that tuck away in your memory when they open them. It is about learning how to bake and taking a thousand of pictures. It is about Christmas parties at Subway because it is not the location, but who you are with that matters. Christmas is about holding your family and friends close to your heart and giving them your time because time is terribly precious and it is the most valued gift to give. It has nothing to do with the shopping, stressing, and prices of physical items. Those can be replaced and you are probably better off without them, but the price of not giving your love and time, is immeasurable. Give your kids your presence by cooking with them all day. Tell about the great love that Jesus has for us! Show your family how much you love them by snapping pictures of them even when they tell you to stop. Do not ever stop. Be there to teach them about sacrifices and honor. Not the best deals of the season. If you were to loose all of your materials, but  you still had your family, friends, and God, then what did you actually lose?

My favorite memories of the holidays have nothing to do with what I got that year or how much money I spent.

I love the time I rode horses on Christmas with the best people a girl could have been blessed with.

I hold tight to every time I have walked or driven through Christmas lights with people who mean the world.

Camping and hunting at the deer lease are memories I will never forget.

Hanging Candy Canes on the Christmas tree because that was the only form of decorating I enjoyed (That has changed).

The Christmas story and the love in the man’s voice who read it and the love in the man who created it.

The ultimate gift of Christmas has already been paid at a high price. Therefore, at this time of year, be grateful for the opportunity you have with those around you and never forget why we have Christmas and these people we love. Do not forget the love and time that has been given to you by the Heavenly Father. I believe by displaying honorable values, taking advantage of time, and showing love we can bring back to life the meaning of Christmas.

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