I love getting presents for people! In the weeks before Christmas I always excitedly ask my children, “So what are you getting for Christmas” or “What do you want Santa to get you this year?” Picking out their gifts is the highlight of the holiday for me. I want to get them just what they want. Although recently, I noticed that I get so consumed with GETTING them things for Christmas that I forget about GIVING them things.
As I rushed out shopping to get the crewneck from Pacsun, I failed to stop and give my daughter the attention she needed as she tried to tell me about the test she took. As I searched on Barnes and Noble for the book I wanted to get my son, I didn’t give him the patience he needed when he interrupted me to ask me about our schedule. I was so preoccupied with getting stuff that I wasn’t giving me.
I realized that I had my twins make a list of the things they wanted me to get them, so I decided to be intentional and also make a list of what I will try to give of myself as I get them their gifts. As I began to think about specific instances, I found that there was a great deal that I needed to give this Christmas.
I will get Jesse the training mask but I will give him trust to make good choices. I will get Hannah the gray boots but I will give her understanding when she is nervous.
For each gift item on their list, I added one of my own, so now for every ‘I need to get them”, I have a “I will give them”. It is a very different list that I am carrying around this year and as they open their gifts, my prayer will be that I have given them more than I have gotten them.
Heavenly Father, Thank you for giving us your Son. Thank you for giving us a Savior. Thank you for giving us just what we needed. Help me to be more like you and to recognize what my children need and to give freely.