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christmas
true meaning of christmas
family gatherings
christmas is a time
meaning of christmas
fond memories
marriage and family
What If There Were No Christmas – How Would You Feel?
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What If There Were No Christmas – How Would You Feel?

Local Brisbane newspaper Courier-Mail Carried an article ‘We Found The True Meaning of Christmas’.

Three people gave their thoughts on what Christmas means to them. Three meanings came out of that article for me.

1) A wish to unite family

2) Giving presents when money is tight

3) Family gatherings

United Families Breaking Up

Humans want to feel happy, not feel pain. Many needs for happiness can be satisfied in the family circle. Christmas is a time when people can arrange their annual leave to get together with family. In a warm family relationship our desire for happiness can be filled in a wonderful way. It can produce an atmosphere of trust and compassion.

Today a very different spirit is spreading into families. The philosophy of ‘me first’ has lead to the family unit breaking up. Children don’t care about their parents who long to see them. Even Christmas doesn’t bring them together anymore.

History teaches us about the importance of family. Unfortunately this kind of history is not taught in schools, so the lessons history teaches is lost, and the mistakes of our forefathers are lost, and we are doomed to repeat them.

In The Story of Civilization, Will Durant tells the disintegration of the family in Greece 2000 years ago. He says, “The cause of the Roman conquest of Greece was the breakdown of Greek civilization from within.” He them tells that the strength of the Roman Empire was the family. But when sexual immorality became rampant, it went into decline.

There are thousands of books dealing with marriage and family life. Most contain at least some helpful information. Yet family life keeps deteriorating. Natural affection between parents and children gives strength.

TIME keeps on moving. The past may hold many fond memories for us, but we can’t live in the past. We can learn from the past, including mistakes, but we can only live in the present. Even though a family may be getting along well at present, the fact must be faced that the present is only temporary; today becomes yesterday, and the present soon becomes the past. Therefore, it is vital to family happiness that we keep looking to the future, preparing and planning for it. What it will be like, for us and those close to us will depend largely on the decisions we make now.

Giving of Gifts

One way we show our love for family is the giving of gifts. It tells the other person that we thought about them, enough to spend time and money looking for a suitable gift. The gift does not have to be expensive to convey the thought of love. If a gift is given grudgingly the gift does not carry the message of love. Rather, it carries the message of unwilling giving. To me Christmas is a time when people, due to peer pressure, are moved/pushed/forced into spending money when they can’t afford it. Due to the economic climate Christmas can be a burden on many people. If there were no Christmas, would people feel stressed out for one reason or another?

Gift-giving has its place. In our family the giving of gifts does not coincide with Christmas. We can give gifts when we feel like it. The last time I gave a gift to my daughter was when she got her driving learner’s permit. I bought her a big Teddy Bear. I hung it on her bedroom door so she would see it when she came back from the test. The gift was my way of saying ‘congratulations’. When we only give gift during Christmas or some other religious holiday, family and friends come to expect it. If you don’t get them something, you are looked down upon.

Family Gatherings

This should the happiest of times. Before when families lived close together, family gathering were more common. Today parents and children can live hundreds of miles away. Christmas affords them the time off from their busy schedules to come together to strengthen family bonds and fill the need for happiness and forget the troubles in the world. That ideal situation is what we all long for. If there is no Christmas will we make the time to gather together?

The psychologist, Toby Green,made a point that happiness comes more from giving, sharing your feelings with others.

I agree with his statement that the gift can be handmade. That kind of gift is more personal. It is a gift of the heart instead of the wallet.

Family unity should not be taken for granted. It should be cherished and nurtured. Children growing up in such a caring and happy environment will benefit for life.

No Christmas

So if there were no Christmas, how would you feel? I haven’t celebrated Christmas for many years. I don’t need Christmas to love my family, to give gifts, to share myself with outsiders. I practise ‘giving’ all year round. So if one day Christmas were outlawed, I would miss only one thing: the extra holidays from work!


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