Thursday, December 21, 2006

More Memories ...

It is interesting how many emotions Christmas memories bring out in all of us. I got an email from a cousin who remembered the Christmas at our house where everyone came. One of my daughters wrote her own post about some of our traditions while the kids were all still home. I am enough Christmas memories, from growing up and with my own family, to post for a month. Then there are the memories of Christmas as a pastor and some special times at various churches.

One difficult Christmas that is memorable was in Kansas. I was still in college, we had just moved there a few months earlier. Todd was 7 months old, we were living in a 3 room duplex with a wall space heater that didn't work well and at times roaches, who we constantly battled in that place. I was a full-time student and worked full-time as a school custodian at night. My wife was babysitting in our little 3 room castle. Money was so tight it hurt. The only reason we had a Christmas tree was the generousity of a friend who purchased one for us (yes , it was a real one). We purchased one present for Todd, a little clear plastic ball with a butterfly in the middle that would spin when he pushed the ball. That was the only present under the tree that year. The wife and I each needed something desperately so we got those and declared them presents. I remember for me it was $15 pair of shoes, because mine had holes in them, I can't remember what she got, but know it was nothing big or exciting.

My parents came from Indiana on Christmas Eve and brought a couple of presents for each of us. Then the lousy space heater went out that night and it was very cold that Christmas. It made for a tearful Christmas. But it is one that will never be forgotten. That was a tough one for me, feeling like I was a failure when I couldn't provide anything for Christmas for my family. Maybe that is why I sometimes go a little overboard with gifts at Christmas.

I guess it also makes me more sensitive to others around us who are having a rough Christmas. We have done something for some other family nearly every year. Usually done quietly, often anonymously, to help someone else who be having one of those difficult Christmases.

Who are you helping this year? May your memories be bright and meaningful and may you remember the greatest memory is of the birth of the Savior, Jesus Christ.


Post a Comment

<< Home