This Christmas my twelve year old grandson learned it’s more fun to give than receive.
This year my youngest grandson decided he was going to buy his own gifts for members of our family for Christmas. He started saving his allowance and doing chores around the house, asked for more jobs (paying jobs that is) he could do to get an even larger stash for his shopping trip. Once his wallet carried the proper amount, the hunt was on.
First there were cards to pick out (of course he read all the choices and kept only the most appropriate ones). Then there were the gifts for mom, grandma and grandpa, his brother who is in the army, his friend next door.
After the cards were bought he thoughtfully wrote out his Christmas wishes for each person, sealed and addressed each envelope and placed them carefully on the Christmas tree for all to see.
The next trip(s) involved actually shopping for the presents. Armed only with his intimate knowledge of each person’s likes and dislikes we (remember he’s 12 so someone had to drive him) set out on the mission to bring home the presents.
So off we went, braving the hundreds of other shoppers in our little town, which seemed to grow to that of a thriving metropolis on the days (yes days, many days) that we went shopping. The first store didn’t have the right stuff for grandma; the second was not filled with the right gifts for his brother etc…etc…etc.
Ugh…How do you do this? So many choices, so little money, so much time!
Little by little he managed to find all the right gifts for everyone and after each shoping trip he carefully and with lots of love wrapped every gift with brightly colored paper and special bows and placed them under the Christmas tree for all to try to guess what they were.
When the last gift was purchased a Christmas miracle occurred during a conversation on the way home. My grandson said “Grandpa, I don’t know how you guys do this Christmas shoping thing every year. There is so much stuff to look at before you find just the right gift for everyone, it takes so much time to do it and you have to make sure you don’t run out of money before you’re done”. I asked him how he felt about his experience. “Sort of glad and sort of weird” was his answer. “Weird I asked?” Yeah, I’ve never done this before; you know, use my own money and buy people gifts. I feel really good that I did that but that feels weird, a good weird". Then he showed me maturity beyound his years, he said "Now I understand what you mean when you say it really is more fun to give that to receive.”
This Christmas God gave me a special present. I got to see the Magic of Unselfish Christmas Giving through the eyes of a twelve year old. It’s a gift I’ll cherish the rest of my years. Thank you!