Which brings me to the Spirit of Christmas... I love the original story of Santa Claus (yes, I'm referring to Saint Nicholas) and how he gave gifts away to children who needed something. I love the spirit of generosity that comes with that historical part of Santa Claus.
My son, Aidan, has started to get into the spirit of generous giving. I let him 'shop' for Dad, Justin, and Jordan. (Yes, he was spending my money, not his own). It took him about 10 minutes to figure our we were not shopping for things he wanted, but for others. When he got that part, he did a fabulous job of picking thoughtful gifts that people would find useful or enjoy. It brought himself out of his 'I want that!' mind-set, and he was able to think of others.
I saw joy on Jordan's face when he saw the little kitchen set for him and his brother. The widest smile ever took over his face as he asked, "Is it for me?" Pure delight with wide eyed wonder!
Justin and I were talking about miracles at the table last night. (We had been reading the family devotional by Ann Voskamp, The Greatest Gift. "What are some of the miracles in your life Justin?" He was quick to name off every member of the family and then he added, "Every time you forgive me for being late or doing something wrong." Both were good answers. Family and forgiveness. Great miracles and great gifts.
Humor, helpfulness, generosity, thoughtfulness, joy, wonder, family and forgiveness. All of these elements express important elements of the Spirit of Christmas. It all comes together in love. Christ coming into the world as a babe allows us to see Him as family and experience unconditional, peace giving love.