Tis the season.....for depression and commercialism.....yet, it is also the season for hope.........
The holiday season...........while I have no statistics to substantiate this, I know this is the time of year when most people hit the doldrums, seasonal depression, whatever you want to label it. I speak from experience, and this morning was a classic example.
I found myself before 8 am in a local national retailer, wandering with a buggy. I was looking for one thing on my son's Christmas list......and I was depressed. As I meandered through the aisles, the Christmas music was subliminally trying to get me to buy more ....I am sure. I could not find the item on my son's list, but I did do some Christmas shopping. This is how I now approach Christmas: I do not need anything (except a new phone). Since this season is so hard on me emotionally (I am not happy with the place I am in life.), I seek to not focus on myself, but on others.
Today I started Christmas shopping for my school Angel. This is a boy who has moved on to a higher grade, but he is one that last year went home on Fridays with a backpack of food he may not have had as well as special kid treats because God told me to help him. While I see "I want" postings on Facebook and read of people stun gunning each other and knifing each other on Black Friday, I want to simplify Christmas.....I want to get as close to what I think Christ would want me to do. And, to me, that means doing for others.
If you know anything about Jesus, think of whom he hung out with: tax collectors, prostitutes, lepers...............the misfits of society....those society spurned.........He, the Son of God, came to offer us, any of us, including the "marginal" of society (society's "cast-offs").....life everlasting beyond this broken, corrupted life on earth. I believe He shakes his head in pain when he sees the greed demonstrated during this season that bears His name...........at how commercialized we have become so that the average person has either forgotten the reason for the season or gives Him a minimum nod.
I think of this boy who doesn't have much; and on his questionnaire he filled out, he is not asking for much. God has given me the resources to help him, and that is my calling. I do it in Jesus' name and for Him; I have to be the hands and feet of Jesus.
Jesus is why I am compiling a baking list of items I need from the grocery store to bake for the kids at school...........any 6th grader, not just the 67 I teach. A large number of the kids I contact daily live in poverty and in less-than-desirable home situations; I may be the only light some of them see on a daily basis. That is why I scoured the internet on-the-spur-of-the-moment for eggless brownies (I had no eggs but still wanted to bake.) the other night. By the way, the kids LOVED them!
So.................in this season of "I want" thinking when you may find yourself feeling depressed or harried from the "expected" shopping, slow down. Ask yourself what you can do for someone else this season....connect or re-connect with the true meaning of Christmas: Be Christ to someone who may not know Him.........you may be the only light in that person's life.