What is the reason for the season? Some will say, a time for giving. Or, a time of feasting and making merry. Still others will point to the stable with Joseph, Mary, Jesus, the shepherds, angels, and of course the three kings bearing gifts. That is how the tradition of giving gifts on Christmas came to be. Now, I don't want to bear bad news, but I do want to tell the truth.
First of all, they weren't kings at all, but wise men. And no one knows if there were three wise men. We have only heard that because there were a total of three different kinds of gifts given - gold, frankincense, and myrrh. We know there were at least two and possibly more than three.
Secondly, the wise men were never there at the manger. They never saw Jesus as a newborn, but rather, several months to two years later. Now, of course, giving gifts to one another is fine but is that the real reason for the season? Isn't it supposed to be about Jesus? (Now I'm only talking to Christians here... everyone else can celebrate Christmas for other reasons.) Shouldn't He be the reason for the season?
Let's get serious here. Most everyone knows, Jesus is not the reason for the season. Perhaps He should be, but He's not. And I don't want to break this to you, but giving is not the reason either, or even a time for family getting together. Family and friends get together at other times of the year also. So what is the reason?
The reason for the season is receiving. You know, getting stuff. It seems the children (for the most part) are only interested in what they want and what they get. Sometimes they can be so disappointed unless you get them exactly what they want! Even many adults are like that. You know, that good old-fashioned materialism, covetousness or just plain selfishness. Now, in this day of ever advancing electronics, toys, and other things, will it ever stop?
If we raise our children to covet, they will - and probably hand it down to their children, as well. So, let's be honest with each other, and especially, our-selves. For Christians, it seems Christmas should be about Jesus. You know, CHRISTmas! And for everyone, Christmas should not be about getting or wanting. It should be about getting together, enjoying the season, relaxing, loving each other and giving! What about training our children up to be givers and wanting things that really matter? That is easier said than done, but we can at least try.