Last week I helped second graders with their Christmas shopping in the school store. Several times before the children entered the room with the tables of merchandise, teachers admonished, "This is the time to shop for people in your family, not for yourself."
One by one as the kids filled their bags, I led them to a table in the lunch room where we waited for the last minute shoppers to finish. One little boy played with a toy he purchased. "Whose that for?" I asked.
"Me," he said.
"You weren't supposed to shop for yourself," I replied.
"I know." He smiled.
How many of us are guilty of buying for ourselves while we shop for Christmas? I have to confess I am as guilty as the little boy. Yet, I find more joy in wrapping gifts for others, than in satisfaction of buying things for myself.
Think About It
Jesus said, "It is more joyful to give than to receive." Although it is challenging, it is a lesson worth learning. There is a pair of fur lined shoes I'd like to have, but this year, I choose not to think about them. When I see their picture in ads, I delete them off my e-mail, and switch my thinking to others and what I can do for them.
Pray About It
Father God, I want to be more like Jesus, but it's hard this time of year. I see a lot of things I want when I go shopping. Help me to be content with what I have and find things to give others, even if it's a smile or a hug. Amen.