Monday, November 19, 2012

On Christmas

It started here.
“What does Jesus get for His birthday?”
The words hung… strung me up.
I say the words into the black. Um… A cake? Our love?
I can hear him turn again in the bed, roll over on the pillow. Restless…
“But Mom…. if we get wrapped presents for our birthdays, real sacrifices from people who love us — they gave up other things to give something to us — then why don’t we do that for Jesus’ birthday?”
I stand at the door looking into all that light cast down the hallway.
Why is the sky blue, why do we blink, how do clouds hold all that water, the children ask me a thousand questions and the world spins dizzy on a million questions I don’t know the answers to.
I stand in the dark, the light right there, and I grope for the answer that could change the world…
“Why don’t we give up things so we can give to Jesus for His birthday?”
- “If it is Jesus’ birthday, why do we give each other presents?”
And then I found this.

Which led us here.

Care to join us?

Or start your own campaign!


  1. I'm curious - did your family do gifts this year to one another?

    This year I felt more strongly than in past years that I didn't really need or want anything for Christmas. I love making handmade gifts for family at Christmas, and I cherish the ones I receive, but I kept wondering if I would want to move more in this direction, of giving only to the least of these at Christmas time.

    I think I'm very aware of how easy it would be to accumulate way too much stuff, especially with a little one now. Nathan and I gave Nell three little things (I mean, we're talking $2.97 - type things, a teether, a little bath toy, and a book) and I really tried not to let things go overboard. Nathan did his Christmas shopping for me at an antique store this year. :) (not expensive antiques.. antique stores are every couple of blocks in some parts of MA.)

    I've been pondering how we'll 'do' Christmas as Nell grows, how to keep things simple, how to keep Advent low-stress, how to focus on Christ... you should do a post on what your family's Advent and Christmas was like! I would love to read something like that.

    wow, what a rambling comment... sheesh. :-)

  2. also - in looking at your water campaign (that's wonderful that you raised that money, by the way!) I resonate with that little mention that sometimes we're giving other people stuff out of some obligation. Yesterday I was working to banish the stress of 'so-and-so gave Nell something and we didn't give their baby something,' or 'they gave us a gift and we didn't get something for them,' because of course it shouldn't be about that! But at the same time, some of the little gifts we received from friends and family were so meaningful (a book given to Nell had me tearing up as I read it to her, for example), and I don't want to be closed off to blessing other people in a similar way if I could.

    Ahhh... can you tell I've been thinking about this a lot and haven't formed my thoughts well yet?

    I've heard of the ideas of doing 'a want, a need, a wear, a read' for giving gifts to your kids; my parents did three gifts like the three wise men; some families manage to do all and only handmade gifts... the bottom line is, I want to keep things simple, and I'm proud of myself for not going crazy with Nell's first Christmas, but I want to be planning now for how we'll do Christmases in the future.