For some people it is a time they have been looking forward to for a long time. For some teachers, it is the end of a long school term. For children it is presents, off school, and perhaps, if it keeps getting colder, maybe even snow (especially this week ahead in Malinslee!). For others it means facing having to go into the shopping centres and trying to get those last remaining presents or cards. Having tried it a couple of weeks back with a buggie, I can see why some people get their presents and cards all done by mid November!!!
For others, Christmas will be very difficult. There are many who are bereaved and remember their loved ones especially over the next couple of weeks. Those families and friends need our support, even if it is a little card, or a cup of tea or a pop round. For many families, their loved ones are serving with our armed forces around the world, especially in Afghanistan. And there are those individuals and families who find it very hard because of problems in the families, worries over work, or perhaps no work.
Jesus once said, it is more blessed to give than receive. Christmas is an act of giving from God to us, the people of the world. We remember the gifts from the wise men, but Jesus is a gift to us. I guess, when we think about the needs around us, people around us, Jesus’ words – it is more blessed to give than to receive make us think. What will we give this Christmas?