My friend Aaron is a thinker. I love him to pieces, but man, his questions make my head hurt. I'm usually all about acceptance. I tend to go with the status quo. And no, I don't always think that's a good thing, but it is easier.
So, tonight I was skimming over some blogs, (Can you say 331 posts in my blog reader? Yikes!) and I popped over to Shaun Groves blog and a series of posts entitled "Going Giftless". I should have just clicked onto another blog, because now my head hurts.
The basic premise is whether or not we should give gifts at Christmas. He explores some of the common reasons behind gift giving and why it is so hard to stop the over abundance at Christmas, and how he and his family handle it.
And now I'm thinking about it. The whole Christmas gift giving has been a thorn in my marriage since Christmas number one. Terry is not a big fan of giving people a bunch of stuff when they already have a bunch of stuff. Especially when there are a whole boatload of people without anything who could use even a little stuff.
Frankly, I've never been submissive in this issue. Why? I LOVE GIVING GIFTS AT CHRISTMAS! There, I yelled it. Ok, I don't think I will go down the submission road in this post, but just know it will be a key point in how I address this issue next year.
Americans are, in general, spoiled. C'mon. Admit you know it, and see it. Look at how everyone is freaking out that Christmas spending is down for the first time in several decades. Nevermind it's only down by like 2-3%; the world will never be right again if people don't overspend themselves into the poor house at Christmas! I've been guilty of this more than once in the past. It's a crazy ride we get on at Christmas. And I've come to the conclusion, rides that make you get sick, stressed and puke are not good ones.
But back to the series. One of the most thought provoking parts (at least for me) of Shaun's posts was this:"I thought it would be a good idea to have a moment of honesty with our adult selves. Truth be told, giving gifts to our kids isn’t always about our kids. Sometimes it’s about us and what we’ve always known. It’s about our comfort and compliance with a societal norm, a tradition as old as milk on cereal. If we changed the tradition, the expectations, if we made a radical substitute, who would be most affected by it the most really: The children or the grown ups?"
As my friend's wife Lorren would say, "Yeah, about that....".time to do some thinking. And don't worry. I know not all of my friends ( all 4 of you who still check in) will share my questioning on this. It's ok. I don't expect you to. Sometimes God asks things of us that he doesn't ask of others.