Have you ever received a gift that you didn’t want?  The BIG build up and hype for the holidays is like opening a gift that is shallow and EMPTY.   It now begins with shopping on a day we are to be grateful—Thanksgiving… the gifts all wrapped under the tree nice and neat with ribbons and bows, the hustle and bustle of crowds, the frustration of trying to spend time with all your loved ones for the holidays, trying to allocate time to send Christmas cards, making cookings, and being so focused on all the things that you need to do takes any Joy out of what is supposed to be a time of celebration.  How did we as a society get so far down the wrong path regarding Christmas? 

I’m just as guilty as everyone else…but have found with each and every new year my focus has changed.  It’s not about how many gifts I can buy to let others know I love them.  It’s what I try to do each and every day while I still have a breath to breathe in this life.  Its going back to the basics…and not letting “things” fill you up as in endless gifts at Christmas time.

To me, it begins with what you scatter to others.  It’s scattering a little something different when the opportunity arises.  A word of encouragement to someone who needs it just at the right time, it’s a genuine compliment to a stranger or a loved one–might be at a time when they really need to hear it.  It’s a time when you offer guidance to a loved one who is trying to navigate the uncertain waters of life in a challenging situation, it’s that time when your children look to your example for how they should live and grow, it’s a time when you let someone you love fail–for knowing that the only way to truly grow is to fail, it’s giving Hope when a situation feels hopeless, it’s offering forgiveness when your heart has been wounded, it’s offering a consistent-steady-stream of all of the above into ONE common bond or deep rooted foundation of LOVE…

 In all things when you remember to give away things that people really need like support, kindness, love, guidance, encouragement, hope, forgiveness, and your prayers…you give a gift that keeps on giving for generations to come.  A gift that is filled with something that will NEVER be EMPTY!  The gift of hope that will be hard to stop giving…it will turn into those homemaid cookies that you savor and melt in your mouth, those beautiful Christmas cards you receive and look forward to getting from your family and friends that warm and fill your heart, and the joy of laughter from those you love filled with everlasting peace. 

“It’s not what you gather, but what you scatter that tells what kind of life you have lived.”  Helen R. Walton