What makes a good Christmas? When I was little, I thought it depended on whether or not I got what I wanted from Santa. Then as I got older I knew it was a good Christmas when I was able to spend time with my friends and I got the presents I wanted. Later, I just wanted money, to buy my own presents, and I wanted to be able to spend time with my girlfriend or my friends. Sure, I love seeing my family, but that wasn’t my focus.
I think it was after I got out of college and was in pilot training when Christmas with the family began to be important. I guess you don’t realize the importance of something until it’s taken away. Now, I look back on all the Christmas’s past, and I can’t remember many specific toys of gifts. What I remember most are the faces and smiles of my family. I remember Grandmother Roan who for ten years said this would be her last Christmas. I remember Nena and Van along with Mae, throwing a party and trying to dance with all the kids. I remember Mom and Dad keeping us from coming down to early on Christmas morning. I remember all my sisters waking up and sitting at the top of the stairs until we could all run down to check what we had gotten. I remember Aunt Jean and Uncle Charlie, who actually paid for many of our presents in the early years. I remember so much more.
You see, it’s not really about the gifts. It’s not about whether you give or get. It’s really about love. His love is the key that unlocks hearts at Christmas. You might not be a believer, but it’s still His love that opens the door to let your love out at Christmas. Why do people get happy and smile. I think that they want to believe. There is a hole in their heart needing to believe in something. Christmas allows them to fill that hole temporarily. I think it is God’s way of drawing us into loving. If we open ourselves to love, it begins to bring a crack in our armor so that we might receive His love.
So, yes this was a good Christmas. I was able to spend it with Sheryl and Scott and Lacey and the kids. I got to see Jennifer, Sean and the kids on face time as well as Lisa, Hernan and the kids. But that’s still not the same. It would have been a great Christmas if we all could have been together. No, that’s really not fair. We might never all be able to be together at Christmas time. That means I would never have a great Christmas. So, I am declaring that I did have a great Christmas. I really did enjoy every part of it, and seeing Lisa and her family last week and now about to go see Jennifer and her family will make it complete. It’s great, just different.
Christmas is about love. It’s also about remembering, and I do remember all the Christmas’s past with fond memories, especially those with Julia when the kids were little. But as good as every Christmas is, it’s always about the next one, and the anticipation of life and love that it brings. So as I say goodbye to Christmas 2011, I look with great anticipation to next year and Christmas 2012. What joy we will have because of His love flowing through us all. Making memories is a lot of fun too!