Thursday, December 22, 2011

Christmas Selfishness

Today I am dealing with Christmas Selfishness. It has nothing to do with what or how much I am getting, actually just the opposite. See, since I've become a mom I don't really expect much for myself anymore. Don't get me wrong, I love getting gifts and surprises, but I spent most of my time sacrificing things I want so Zoey and others can have more.

And yet, I am still dealing with selfishness, though it isn't the traditional kind. I am selfish because I don't have enough to give.

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I want Zoey to have things under the tree and Stephen too. I want to give my parents things to thank them for helping out with Zoey so much throughout the year. I want Stephen's family, especially Zoey's young cousins to have things. I want our friends to have things to let them know how much we appreciate them all year. I want some left over to give to charities and donate toys. I want to give, but I realize we can't monetarily accomplish this. We barely have enough to keep food on the table and a roof over our heads.

I want to stop right here because we do have enough. We do always have the things we need. Stephen pointed it out correctly when we were discussing this...we feel Christmas is a time for aplenty. In reality, it is the same as the rest of the year. We have no more money than any other month, but we are trying to do more with it.

But it's the end of the month and since I stay at home with Zoey we are a one income family and tend to live paycheck by paycheck no matter how hard we try to save. And the sacrifice is worth it to us all the time, it just seems that sometimes it feels more like a sacrifice than other times. So with a week left until the end of the month (Stephen gets paid bi-monthly) we are tight as we tend to be every month. But for some reason it feels different because it is Christmas.

So anyway, the reality that we reached our limit for the month (and still have enough to travel to see Grandparents next week) caught me a little off guard. We pretty much finished Christmas earlier this week so there will be nice things under the tree Christmas morning, just like we planned. But for some reason my head was still spinning with things to do.

After feeling the weight of this realization (that I honestly should have see coming anyway) made me a little depressed. As I sat there feeling blue I realized it was ridiculous. So I took a nice warm shower. There is nothing like a good shower to get your perspective back. And it happens to be some of my best God-talking time--sometimes I even talk out loud.

This morning was definitely some good God talking time. He helped me realize that we do have everything we need, even more than that. He also reminded me (once again) that it isn't the things, it's the people, the time and the love behind it. Those things we really do have aplenty. Most importantly, God gave me a peace in my heart that He loves me and my family is taken care of.

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Now that the day has continued (I don't get to write until nap/quiet time) the peace is still there. And even in that short amount of time God has shown me a reason for the realization I had because we can help some friends with what we have left. That just makes me so excited. It means we will have less, but God is in control and in the end we will have more.

Most of our gifts (especially to adults) will be handmade ornaments and pictures from Zoey. They weren't bought from a store, but the meaning is so much more. I'm still excited for Christmas morning. There are still things under the tree that will brighten a two-year-old's day and I can't wait to see her face when she sees that Santa has come. We will also get to see family and friends in the next two weeks and it is going to be the best gift just to spend time with them.

Jesus is the reason for the season, not things. To celebrate giving, love and joy. That is what makes all the craziness worth while. Today I dealt with selfishness. And today God has helped me overcome my obstacle. God is good!

Merry Christmas!

Proverbs 30:8-9:  “Keep falsehood and lies far from me; give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread. Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you and say, ‘Who is the LORD?’ Or I may become poor and steal, and so dishonor the name of my God.”

1 comment:

  1. Thanks so much for sharing this. I know exactly how you feel. It's much easier to be thrifty when it's yourself and not your generosity you're fighting!