December 01st, 2022
This ornament is a continuation of the one from yesterday. Titled "young Santa, Limited Edition," it shows the "young santa," the young holy one again, but today he is already dressed and out doing his work. This ornament shows what his work is - he is the gift-giver.
Always thinking of what others need, this young santa tries to bring it. Although our society today dictates we give each other many gifts at Christmas, we can't assume we know what is in those boxes. Maybe, instead of a physical item, the blue box contains the gift of friendship, of an invitation to a cup of coffee. Maybe the round polka-dotted box is the gift of empathy, of noticing that a loved one is in need, of lending a hand. And perhaps the box on top is something physical, like a warm scarf or gloves. After all, we know that God speaks through physical items as well as spiritual.
Notice the little cardinal perched on top of the gifts. He is looking down, straight into the eyes of the little boy. It's as though the two are communicating, the bird tweeting encouragement and guidance to the boy, who listens and responds. Although the Holy Spirit is often portrayed as a dove, a cardinal also seems very appropriate. This bird reminds us of the burning bush, aflame with fire that did not consume it.
This ornament reminds us of the importance of being a gift-giver, of thinking of the needs of others. Possibly the best gift we can give this year is to take a minute and think "what does my friend/spouse/child/parent actually NEED?" "What is hidden down in their hearts that they really want?" Is it time shared? Is it encouragement? Is it a change of attitude from me? Is it help with daily tasks?" Of course, sometimes it really may be that video game or do-dad they've been eyeing, since gifting physical things is often a way of showing that we were listening, noticing, paying attention. This year, be sure to give items that can't be wrapped with those that can. Imagine yourself as the gift-giver, the one who gives what is truly needed.
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