Christmas is one of my favorite holidays. It’s always such a magical time of the year.
“Christmas magic will last forever and ever and ever!” my five year old daughter declared as we were having an adventure on the floor with her toy horses this past Christmas morning. I couldn’t agree with her more and yet the magic changes throughout the years.
That evening her older brother asked her “What was your favorite Christmas gift … besides being together as a family?” Made me smile to hear him say this especially after he had been quite depressed and moody after opening Christmas presents that morning. He was so excited right away when he woke up and as we opened the gifts but then something drastically changed.
“I don’t know why I feel this way Dad. I got everything that I wanted,” he finally told me as we talked. I could tell the problem was that he had huge expectations and thought that he would find complete satisfaction and joy in his presents. Not finding it there, he felt empty and sad.
“Presents are fun,” I told him, “But they never will make you totally fulfilled and if we expect any object or thing to give us true peace, we will always be disappointed in the end.” I explained that the feeling he longed for can only be found when we are giving love to others and to Got. A difficult lesson for all of us to learn and one I hope he understands a bit better now.
It didn’t take long before he had and his sister were playing with their new Marble Run toy and he had a smile back on his face again. It was hard to see him so down and depressed after being so excited, but he grew a lot this Christmas I think and sometimes growing is painful. The magic will continue to change of course and part of me is sad to think about this. But there is something wonderful when the Christmas magic becomes less about the gifts you get and more about the people around you and the love you share.
To quote St Pope John Paul II, “It is Jesus that you seek when you dream of happiness; He is waiting for you when nothing else you find satisfies you.” That’s the true magic of Christmas.