Christmas as a child is so different than as an adult. The lights of the tree, the wonder of Santa and how he gets all those gifts all over the world is just magical. It is like the belief that a knight can actually fight dragons. It is somewhat sad to find out he really doesn't exist. At the time you realize Santa is your parents is the time you are somewhat aware your parents really aren't your heroes at all, just a mom and a dad. Dad doesn't have super powers and Mom’s cookies are not always as good as Hostess products or Little Debbie's.
Then, as a teenager, Christmas highlight is no school, Christmas break. And then comes the real fun of Christmas, gift exchanges with friends, hanging out at the Mall just to be seen with cool guys, popular girls and in new clothes. And the gifts you want are so much more expensive. No one forgets the lectures with “you want what” and “you are so much more spoiled than I was when I was your age.” In your head, you are saying “yeah right” and hoping your face doesn't convey it.
Well, when adulthood comes, it is with the reality that Christmas, when you have children is once again about the children. Seeing the joy of a child’s face brings it all back, full circle. As a grandmother, I see this once more. And again, I am reminded not only of my children’s faces but once more of my own face all those years ago.
I see much more though now at Christmas time as I have aged. I see the faces on TV, the faces on the news and faces of children on theworld that embrace Christmas. It hits harder than it ever did before. I pray for those children that get and have so little and ask for nothing. Those that pray for a life, for parents, for safety, for a home and for water is heart-wrenching when so many have a material list a mile long. I believe, as children, they deserve that for Christmas. I also believe, those being denied other things they want in their heart should have their wishes granted too.
Yes, these are not material things but neither was the girl’s wish on The Miracle on 34th Street but everyone that watched it over and over stayed glued to the story line. We all had a sixth sense her Christmas wish was basic, a child’s need for happiness.
Many people come from broken homes in this world. Many have lost family along the way. My husband has lost his son and his mother. One Christmas we spent alone in Nashville with no family here and hesat beside me Christmas Eve while I got a chemo infusion. We came home to an empty house. The next day, Christmas I was sick in bed and he was alone in our home for Christmas with nothing to do to spend the day but sit quietly with the blinds drawn and keep noise at a minimum. Christmas is sometimes just a day to fight to be alive to someone with a life threatening disease. To be a survivor, the miracle of Christmas is being alive.
So let’s not forget, as you open your presents circled around yourfamily that some are not quite as lucky as you. Take a few minutes on Christmas to bow your head around your tree to give others a silent prayer for God to touch their life on the 25th with an added ray of hope, like the day Jesus was born.
Many are born into a simple life, poor, less than desirable circumstances. It could be as unfortunate as a barn, with only the hay to keep a baby warm and a North Star shining bright to light the sky and a manager as opposed to an incubator. But prayers and the grace of God makes all things possible. With our prayers, we can turn simple child's dreams into reality and make Christmas wishes come true.