A good friend of mine invited me to a party over the holidays. It was a gift exchange. Each woman invited was asked to purchase an ornament and bring it to the party wrapped. Having had no experience with this kind of an activity I asked the hostess, “What kind of an ornament?”
“Oh, you know, one you think everyone in the room will want when they see it! And of course, it’s all about the packaging.” Those were my only instructions. A few days later I found myself browsing in a Christmas shop when suddenly it dawned on me, the procrastinating Christmas elf, that this was the perfect moment to find my ornament.
I walked around the shop for a long time. There were hundreds of ornaments, every kind imaginable. I started collecting my favorites as I walked about. I soon had them hanging in all ten fingers, unable to make any kind of a choice. “I need some help,” I thought. I called my daughter and started describing the type of party I had been invited to and the ornament choices swinging from each of my fingers, with hopes that she could help me. It didn’t take me long to see that this was not going to help at all. I’m sure she thought I was crazy, calling her about such a little decision and no way for her to actually tell what I was looking at!
Finally I walked up to the check out desk. Maybe these people have some kind of experience with other indecisive women coming in on this kind of errand. Happily they knew just what I was talking about and even which ornament had been most widely chosen for such an occasion. I finally made my purchase!
The hostess, my friend, had created a beautiful, very inviting atmosphere. Her home was luscious with Christmas everywhere. Each woman placed her unmarked wrapped package under the tree. We snacked and chatted until the time for opening arrived. We each picked a number out of a hat and then the games began. Woman number one went to the tree, choose a gift, and unwrapped it. There were lots of oohs and aahs. Then woman number two had the opportunity to either take a gift from under the tree or from woman number one. Which would it be – the known and the unknown? We proceeded like that until every woman had a gift and had had the opportunity to steal a gift from a friend (or someone who use to be her friend). It was a lot of fun! Christmas was wonderful.
It’s January now. I stayed up very late Saturday night getting my after Christmas personal finances back in order and making a budget for January. “Wow, I’m glad to have made it through one more year,” I thought as I closed the books. “The gift giving frenzy of Christmas is all over, or is it?” a little jingle bell went off in my mind:
“Nannette, the world gives gifts at Christmas to symbolize the Savior’s gifts to the world, but the Savior’s gifts to the world are not limited just to Christmas. For Him, gift giving is a year round activity.”
My mind wandered back to my first Christmas party of this season, the “Ornament Exchange.” I dedicate the following thought to all of us who are so in need of the blessings of Christmas the through out the year:
“The great gift of Christmas is The Christ and the great gift of The Christ is His power to help us endure the trials of life and make progress toward Him, day after day after day, every day of the year. The Lord wants to give you the best gift in the room, the one that will be fought over, the one that you are willing to fight for. Fight for it today my friend. The Lord wants you to have it! He brought it to the party hoping you would want it more than anything else under the tree. His gift is wrapped in His flesh and in His blood. He spent everything He had for the right to extend it to you. It’s yours for the taking, if you want it. Don’t trade it for something unknown or something that seems more glamorous. Hold it tight. There is nothing worth the trade. It’s the only real gift in the room.”
Have A Merry Christmas Every Day Of The Year!
By Nannette W.
Posted Monday, January 11, 2010.
Copyright 2008 by Nannette W. All rights reserved. Making or sending copies is permitted if the page is not changed in any way and the material is not used for profit. This notice must be included on each copy made or sent.