Wait! Perhaps you're thinking, "hold on a minute! We just finished Thanksgiving a month ago!" Or, for fellow Canadians, a couple of months ago. And you're absolutely right. This holiday season has a different focus. However, with such a heavy emphasis on gift giving and receiving, I'd like to take a quick time-out for a gentle reminder: most of us already possess the greatest gifts possible. If we have a comfortable home (or ANY home for that matter), warm clothes to wear and nourishing food to eat, we are truly fortunate. If we can add to that secure employment, good health and a loving family, we are blessed beyond compare.
My dear husband, Reuven, God bless him, works in social services at a community center and while he keeps the details of his clients private, I know he spends countless hours coordinating food deliveries for very needy families and providing clothing for the mentally and emotionally challenged and, God forbid, coordinating emergency services for the abused and suicidal. And when that's done, he listens and counsels and provides solace to those for whom physical and emotional security are the greatest gifts they hope for.
Please, this holiday season, in the midst of the fun and joy, take a moment to reflect on how truly blessed you are. Enjoy the comforts of home and family and let those you care for know how precious they are to you. And when the presents are unwrapped and you're thinking of regifting Aunt Susie's sweater because she already gave you one just like it last year, consider joyfully sharing it with someone you've never met: at a shelter, community center, hospital or hospice. And spread the seaons's best gift: love and caring.
Wishing you and yours joy and blessings throughout the holidays and beyond,