Christmas: Do You Really Know What It Is All About?
By: Sarah McI., Grade 6, St. Anne's Elementary School, Peterborough, ON
People think of Christmas as being the most wonderful time of the year -- full of love, joy, peace and prosperity. When they get together with family they stuff their faces with food, catch up on old times, sit by the fire and drink hot chocolate. But really it's not. Actually, in my opinion, it is the exact opposite of what is happening in our world today!
Why do I say that? Well, Christmas is suppose to be about celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ and the gifts he gave us and to share that thought with relatives and friends. That's not what is really shown to be.
In today's life, it has turned out to be about stress, anxiety, frustration, lack of sleep and rushing! Christmas no longer seems to be about goodness and joy. It seems to be about Christmas traps!
TRAPS PEOPLE GET INTO AT CHRISTMAS
What are Christmas traps, you ask?
Christmas traps are the things that pull us away from the true meaning of Christmas. Parents and kids are rushing around thinking of the big things (presents) rather than the little things (sharing and friendship). They get lost in their thoughts and become very angry and frustrated. This can cause lots of problems such as car accidents, yelling at people and so on. We need to try harder to avoid these dangerous traps.
Shopping tends to bring out the worst in people. Why? Because they are frustrated and can't think straight. Pushing and shoving goes on a lot during the Christmas season. Most of the time parents overdo it and end up buying too much. If adults see something they like, whether it's for their child, themselves or for a friend --- they have to get it. So if you're out shopping and you see an elderly man or woman trying to pick up a doll on the shelf (and it's the last one) be polite. Step aside and let them have it instead of taking it yourself.
Decorating your house
Decorating is suppose to be fun. Trimming the tree and putting lights on the roof. However, this year my parents wanted to decorate more than ever. If you ask me, I think it's starting to get a little bit competitive. My dad had the day off Friday, November 24th. The day before he had decided that sooner or later we would have to put the lights on the roof and on the tree. I agreed that it was getting colder and that we should start so.
So the next day, my dad and I hauled out the Christmas lights. I just thought that we would leave them as they were, mixed. But this year he tells me he wants them color coordinated! Personally, I thought he was crazy! This year he has to make it look like he really put 'full effort' into it and to make it look like he knew what year it was.
So off I went, downstairs to start un-screwing bulbs from the previous year. The new pattern was blue, green, red, yellow; blue, green, red and yellow.... It took about two days considering there were nine strings of lights. It was a tough job but 'somebody had to do it'.
We started with the roof. My dad went to get the ladder, while I untangled the lights. By the time he came back, I was only on the sixth string of lights. But eventually we got them all untangled.
My dad walked to the very end of the house, grabbed a string of lights and started his journey up the ladder. When he was all the way to the top, he pulled out of his coat pocket, a clip to hold the lights in place. He put the first clip on the first light and skipped the next two or three. This pattern went on for quite some time until we were finished the whole roof.
Next was the big maple tree. It always looked funky when it was decorated. Since we only used five strings on the roof, we have four leftover and we were ready to use them. My dad went into the garage to get a long straight pole that makes it easier to hang lights on the tree.
We started from the top and worked our way down. When we were done, my dad took a long orange extension cord and connected it to the plug on the wall. The tree looked beautiful!
We set up the flood lights next. We aimed them at our smaller tree and turned them on. It looked pretty good.
We then went inside to get some hot chocolate and have a rest. But when I saw my mom with an anxious look in her eyes I could tell that she had just been pulled into a TRAP! The words that came out of her mouth next could have drove me crazy. I could tell right- a-way that she was getting competitive. She asked us to drive to Canadian Tire to get two more flood lights. Blue and yellow to be exact. I thought that lights on the roof, tree and ground would be enough. But that's not what my mom thought.
When my dad and I came back from Canadian Tire we set up the blue and yellow flood lights. I had to admit, it did look better than before!
A Process-oriented Person
Process-oriented people are the kind of people who are thankful and really show their feelings for Christmas. Slowing down and enjoying opening their gifts; being careful not to rip the paper and perhaps saving the paper for the year ahead. Taking time to thank family, relatives and friends.
They react to Christmas as being a process - giving gifts, instead of always receiving them, and celebrating the birth of Jesus.
Getting presents from Santa and relatives isn't as important as the true meaning of Christmas.
A Goal-Oriented Person
Goal-oriented people do not care a lot about the true meaning of Christmas. All they care about is presents. They make that their one goal for the whole Christmas season. They push through more important things in life, just to get to that one goal. They want to get certain things and are not able to accept the fact that sometimes they can't have it.
The true meaning of Christmas is not about receiving. It is about sharing the gifts that Jesus gave us. The gifts of life, love, forgiveness and giving. The traps of Christmas can sometimes teach us lessons about life that will stick with us forever!
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