Christmas Cards are a way of telling others that their lives have made a difference in our lives. For some the cards are little more than a lovely card with a signature. Others produce Christmas letters which are filled with news about the family who has chosen to reach out a touch others in their circle of significance. A few contain small gifts and involve the simple sacrifices that express that the recipient has added value to the life of the sender. Christmas cards can be a source of blessing and cheer, but allow me to suggest something better.
Jesus said, “Greater love has no one than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” Most of us hear these words from John’s gospel and visualize martyrdom. I actually have come to see something different. Life is measured in time. In fact the word “lifetime” illustrates my point. To lay down your life, you need to give away some of your time. Set aside your agenda to give time to the needs of others. A good way to illustrate this is our American obsession with giving our children Christmas presents. When I think back to all the gifts that mom and dad gave me as a boy, none compares with the all night campout and fishing trip with my father, or the trip to Six Flags with both parents. The great memories are not the pretty things I pulled out of packages, but the walks in the pastures and down the streets of my hometown with the two people who raised me. In short, it was the time they gave me that mattered most, and still does. Somehow I believe that a Christmas visit, however brief, is worth a thousand Christmas Cards. A few kind and loving words shared personally can warm the soul through the coldest winter.
Excuse me. I have some “Christmas Cards” to deliver.