Christmastide

“Christmas–that magic blanket that wraps itself about us, that something so intangible that it is like a fragrance. It may weave a spell of nostalgia. Christmas may be a day of feasting, or of prayer, but always it will be a day of remembrance–a day in which we think of everything we have ever loved.” ~ Augusta E. Rundel … 

What a great way to imagine Christmas… as a “magic blanket that wraps itself about us.” It is perhaps the only season that envelopes us in nostalgia: reminding us of Christmases past, of those people and things we love, and the parts of our lives that are truly meaningful and special. But just as a blanket can only offer us warmth if we robe ourselves in it, Christmas can only touch our hearts if we allow it.

Christmastide is a beautiful season of love; the warmth expressed during this time is one of the most special parts of the holiday experience. But it can only be felt if we allow the love, the emotions, and the appreciation to penetrate the cold and the dark in our lives. Christmas, more than any other holiday, beckons us to think about others–to share of the beauty and treasures in our hearts and to receive of those from others. And in doing so, we partake in the true spirit of Christmas; by giving, sharing, and receiving with love, we wrap ourselves in its comfort and in the memories of Christmases gone by.

Unfortunately, not everyone experiences the warmth of love at Christmas, and not everyone has joyful memories of holidays past. Some have no place to live, or no one to share it with, and it is important that we reach out to those individuals with love and friendship. And if we find ourselves struggling to experience the love and joy of Christmas, perhaps it would be helpful to remember that negative feelings at Christmas do not come from the season itself, but from other individuals who perhaps have had bad experiences themselves, or whose cups are empty and are in need of love. In truth, we cannot control others’ attitudes or how they act, but we can control our own. And if can open our hearts to the spirit of the season, reflecting on those we love and on memories past, we will find ourselves wrapped about in the magic blanket Christmas–such a wonderful and beautiful feeling of peace, joy, hope, and love.

Let the beauty of Christmas surround you.

Questions to consider:

In what ways do you allow Christmas to wrap you in itself? How might you help others to do the same?

What are your most special memories of Christmas?

Why might some individuals get so caught up in the material aspects of the Christmas season as opposed to the spiritual aspects, the love of family and friends, and traditions of the season?

For further thought:

“And the Grinch, with his Grinch-feet ice-cold in the snow, stood puzzling and puzzling: “How could it be so? It came without ribbons! It came without tags! It came without packages, boxes, or bags!” And he puzzled and puzzled ’till his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before! “What if Christmas,” he thought, “doesn’t come from a store? What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more!” ~ Dr. Seuss, How the Grinch Stole Christmas

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