Friday, November 27, 2009

On Keeping the Focus During Christmas

With three little girls it can really be hard for me to not get caught up in all of the commercialism...er...
materialism (let's call it what it is, shall we?) of Christmas. 

It's especially hard when I'm in the States and I think of all the things we won't be able to buy once we are back in India.  I'm really tempted to buy a lot of stuff.  And that's exactly what it is - stuff (which my junior high school English teacher always informed us could be defined as dryer lint).

As parents, we decided a couple years ago to limit our gifts to three.  Three gifts for each little one.   We've found that this really helps us stick to a budget and not over indulge in exuberant amounts of stuff-collecting. 

It also brings us back to Jesus.  Just like the wise men brought three gifts to Jesus.  The three gifts remind us the true reason for our celebrating at Christmas. 

And I think (and hope and pray) it will make an impact on the hearts of the little girls sleeping soundly downstairs, in Nana and Poppy's guestroom.  They'll learn that Jesus is our treasure. 

What do you do for gift-giving to keep your focus on Christ at Christmas?


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3 comments:

  1. Shannon, that's just lovely! I love reading about the ways in which you practice and LIVE your faith, and this post is such a great example. Thank you for sharing with all of us in blogland!

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  2. I"ve heard of this, and am thinking maybe we'll start to implement it as well. Right now, with our girls still so young, it hasn't been an issue. I think last year we got Hazel a closet organizer because she needed it and we knew she wouldn't care it wasn't a toy. :) I agree - the materialism of Christmas really bothers me, and I'm always brainstorming ways to overcome it.

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  3. We do the same thing, 3 gifts per kid. As they get older, 3 gifts gets more difficult because the gifts get more expensive the older they get. But it keeps it all under control.
    We do a couple of things to keep the focus on Jesus. We do charity gifts each year. This year we are going to go shopping for the crisis pregnancy center. Sometimes we do operation Christmas child or others.
    Then on Christmas, we have a stocking for Jesus too. We write on paper and put in the stocking the gifts we have given to Jesus throughout the year, like our charity, sharing our faith, or whatever we do to offer our lives to Him. I beleive this helps the kids understand the gift giving without becoming materialistic. This year they agreed to give up one of their three gifts to buy a gift for the pregnancy center.
    You are right though, teaching our children today, what Christmas is really about, is a big challenge!

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