While growing up, Christmas was one occasion we all looked forward to. The Christmas parties for children, the visits to Santa (locally called Father Christmas) and the open house where family and friends we hardly see in the year come around to the house. Something my siblings and I enjoyed back then were the Christmas gifts our parents got us for the season.
These gifts would have been got a little while before the day, and then wrapped and kept at the Christmas tree on Christmas eve, when we all couldn’t wait to tear off the wraps as the time clocked the 1minute into Christmas. Like every child though, we were inquisitive about what was behind the wraps and would try to use all our senses to guess the gifts before unwrapping except of course the sense of taste.
We are trying to continue with this Christmas tradition now, so we got gifts for our kids and had them wrapped. Last night my daughter (after seeing their wrapped gifts) reminded me of something else we probably did then. It was to put more value on the size of the gift. She picked the bigger gift thinking that was hers and left the smaller one to her brother.
Thinking back now and through life, I’ve discovered indeed that many times the value we put on a thing, a person or even opportunity is determined by what we see. Usually the bigger the better. Or the more beautiful or likely the better. We also do the reverse sometimes, not appreciate a thing if it doesn’t seem to fit the image we had of it. But the truth is, many have missed opportunities by not waiting long enough to see what is behind the wraps or behind the first impression.
The Christmas story did that to many too. A king was being expected; a ruler, strong and powerful. What they saw and heard about was a baby, born in a manger – I'll call it the first NOEL. What they knew was a carpenter’s son. And so it was easy to despise and not believe He was the promise come to pass. I personally believe the promised Messiah came in flesh and my life has been better off looking beyond that first NOEL, beyond the wrap of humanity He had on while on earth to the Deity He is.
My encouragement to us all this season and for life in general is to be patient and wait till after the first NOEL, to look beyond the wraps, appreciate small beginnings so we would enjoy all that we expect even if they don’t seem to look so at the first meet.
Merry Christmas everybody, and thank you for being a part of FOOTSTEPS.