Hi. I hope that your spirits are soaring today or at least pointed toward the sky.
I was in Seattle last week and experienced an impromptu Christmas walk and gathering of gifts. I had set out to go “shopping”…ugh! But, I enjoyed a completely different experience. I was staying at the downtown Sheraton on 6th and had some free time in the morning. I decided to walk down to Pike’s Market. Among the bustle of he morning and all the people scurrying about, I became more and more present in the day. It was just something about the energy in the market that morning. I say that like I’ve been there a lot. I was there once before. The year that Vancouver hosted the world’s fair. It was 1986..I’m thinking!
When I returned to the Sheraton the hotel seemed completely different. I slowed my pace down, for the first time in 3 days, as I walked by the Gingerbread House display. I took the time to look into the children’s faces and see their excitement. It moved me. It really made my Christmas complete. I have no expectations for the next couple of days that are upon us. I want to look into the faces of those that I will be with and I want to see their joy, their sadness, and whatever else they are experiencing. I know I will have lived in the present if I do that. I know i will have experienced life! And, I know that its OK to not be afraid, that something bad is lurking just around the corner. I know that it is OK to be a “part of” because to be a “part of” is a basic human condition, a desire…a daily want.
I have presents. But I didn’t go shopping. No, I walked through Pike’s Market and all these wonderful (and reasonably priced) gifts just presented themselves. Perfect matches for those that I will give them to.
On Thursday, I attended a funeral service. Our neighbor’s 89-year-old mother had passed. Life?…yes! Celebration of a life?..yes! Bad timing?…yes! But whose to decide when our chronological time on earth is over. Not us! Perhaps the God that we are about to celebrate!
Our neighbors will unwrap gifts that their loved one wrapped just a few short days ago. That will be sad. But, the greatest gift that their loved one ever got, was them. Hope they realize that, in kind, that is the gift that they open today. Memories of a friend that they deeply loved.
Their grandmothers favorite refrigerator magnet had the saying which was “Friends are a present that you give to yourself.” Our neighbors really don’t have to open any presents today. They loved the incredible friendship of their grandmother, mother and mother-in-law. And they all spoke about it in heartfelt words.
I love this saying from the inspirational messages, assembled in “45 Lessons in Life”. Number 38 is “All that Truly Matters in the End is that you Loved”.
Merry Christmas my friend!