“Take the scissors and open the blades this much. Then push against the wrapping paper.” The shears quickly cut the paper.
That was my mom teaching me how to wrap a present. Whether it was socks, a boxed tie, a belt or some unusually shaped toy for a brother or sister. (Last night I showed my grandson, Jacob, some of the same techniques.) Gift wrapping was about the most fun of the season after the tree was up and in place.
Both my mom and my dad taught us the value of doing something well when it came to Christmas presents. Wrapping presents often took hours. Scissors, tape, ribbon and paper. They taught us how to curl ribbons and make beautiful bows. How to hide the cute ends and square packages.
The wrapped packages were pieces of art.
We would make little cards of scraps of wrapping paper. Little rhymes would be used to “suggest” what was inside. (Don’t worry about the weather,for this is better than leather.)
People were devoted to the process of making something better. Expressing oodles of love and care. Blessing one another.
My folks would go to stores where many of them would gift wrap as a service. Beautiful boxes, colorful papers and artsy bows, couple with a gorgeous card. (You had the sizzle and the steak and there was atmosphere too!)
There were no bags. Few gift cards. As a matter fact, the only thing a bag was used for was to get packages from one place to another.
I know it is Christmas and the thoughts are in your mind.
It would be a good Christmas story.
But as I pondered it a few days ago, I thought about our devotion to Christ. Often in our walk with Jesus people fizzle out, get bored, becoming less enthusiastic. (Still saved, just not having fun.)
It is not a criticism but more of an observation. Why does this happen? Because often we forget two things. One is, He is the source of life. Two is, we get allow ourselves to get caught up in other things. We tend to forget “customer service”. We skip the devotion. We miss the special things we once did.
Now, we look to give God “gift cards” and “presents” tossed in a bag.
Something needs to change.
Whether it is cooking or wrapping presents if it is not bringing you joy, it is not the project, chore or task, but most likely it is the times missed out on.
But, I am so busy!!!
You can choose to be offended, feel guilty or shout “stop”, but busyness coupled with no joy is often the signpost of you forgot something.
In Him, you can find joy doing dishes. Too many are forgetting the simple fact that He is life. In Him we have life. Through Him we have life.
Dolly Parton — “Don’t get so busy making a living that you forget to make a life.”
I encourage you to recollect the things that brought you joy. Maybe Christmas is your jump start.
The spirit of Christmas is the spirit of love and of generosity and of goodness. It illuminates the picture window of the soul, and we look out upon the world’s busy life and become more interested in people than in things.
Yesterday had been a rough day on some fronts and as I was just falling off to sleep, I was awakened.
“Declare, declare, declare.”
My attention was being caught and my sleep was eradicated. A download of heaven was happening.
I grabbed my phone and began to research.
verb: declare; 3rd person present: declares; past tense: declared; past participle: declared; gerund or present participle: declaring
Do you see that “3rd person”? My attention was being caught rapidly. I had worked out in my mind what I thought I was hearing, before I decided to grab the phone. 3rd person…
Say something in a solemn and emphatic manner.
“he declared that he never revises his prose”
synonyms: proclaim, announce, state, reveal, air, voice, articulate, express, vent, set forth, publicize, broadcast;
Informal come out with, shout from the rooftops
“she declared her political principles”
formally announce the beginning of (a state or condition).
“Spain declared war on Britain in 1796”
synonyms: assert, maintain, state, affirm, contend, argue, insist, hold, profess, claim, avow, swear; formal aver
“he declared that they were guilty”
pronounce or assert (a person or thing) to be something specified.
“the mansion was declared a fire hazard”
synonyms: show to be, reveal as, confirm as, prove to be, attest to someone’s being
“his speech declared him to be a gentleman”
openly align oneself for or against (a party or position) in a dispute.
“Mr. Roosevelt had declared for “a new deal.””
announce oneself as a candidate for an election.
“he declared last April”
reveal one’s intentions or identity.
express feelings of love to someone.
“she waited in vain for him to declare himself”
Middle English: from Latin declarare, from de- ‘thoroughly’ + clarare ‘make clear’ (from clarus ‘clear’).
I heard before I even grabbed my phone. “Add light. Clarify, make clear.” Not just clear, BUT thoroughly clear.
I have always believed that what you say is important. After last night I believe it more than ever. Is it possible declarations of the negative kind are making the atmosphere negative? That positive ones add light and life?
I know I will have more on this but I would be interested in how this might affect you.