The True Christmas Spirit

Christmas is a time of merry making and its closeness to the New Year celebration has made it not only a season for Christians to celebrate the birth of their Saviour but a time to show love by and to all. The spirit of the yuletide is giving without the thought of receiving back. It is a time of happiness because we see joy in people.

In addition to the season being a time of reflections and appreciation to God for the graces and blessings received in the year, we also use the time to reflect on the coming year.

Certainly, Christmas is a time of giving and sharing with those around us, but that sharing is not limited to those that we know, we love and care for. It is also for that person you have never met, that poor family who lives in your community.

From its very essence, we can see this giving nature of the yuletide in the birth of Christ himself. God freely gave out his Son to be born a man who will save us from sin and bring us back to God. So what is Christmas without giving? It is the giving act of God that we celebrate on Christmas thus we must reflect this very act.

More significantly, we share the moment with our families and friends which to us makes it joyous to some of us. Buying new clothes and giving presents to our children are the Christmas traditions that we have always chosen to observe and we always look forward to this treasured tradition every Christmas.

Although we all know of this spirit of giving in the Christmas season, our focus for much of the times has been on our families and friends. With a few celebrities, NGOs like my very own Love Foundation Club and other individual philanthropists always carrying the sharing of this seasonal love outside the family and friend zone, we must all emulate them. The true nature of Christmas is to give to the poor and the needy.

One of the other main reasons we have to carry out this custom of giving at Christmas is to remind us of the presents given to Jesus the baby king who was born in a manger (a symbol of him being born in poverty) by the Wise Men: Frankincense, Gold and Myrrh. Christmas is a time of forgetting ourselves and finding time for others as the Wise Men did.

Let us extend the Christmas spirit of giving to the poor, the needy, the street kids, the sick and aged in our communities. This is the true spirit of Christmas; God giving his begotten Son not to a world of saints, a world of the rich but a world of those who have been cut off from him by sin.

Show love to someone who is poor outside your family and friend zone and with this, you are imitating Christmas in its true nature. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Words by Elikem Akakpo