I walked into the kitchen and let out a heavy sigh. I had forgotten about the piles of Christmas gifts I left stacked on the floor the night before. Maybe the memory lapse was intentional because wrapping packages ranks somewhere between changing dirty diapers and doing laundry.
I know some people love to wrap presents; my daughter is one of them. She aligns the paper perfectly, tucks every box corner like sheets on a hospital bed and accessorizes with ribbon and bows.
Time changes our perspective.
There was a time I wrapped gifts just like my daughter. No doubt her obsession to wrap, decorate and accessorize was learned from me. It is funny how time changes things, or maybe it just changes our perspective of things.
In my youth it was all about me and how I looked on the outside. I wrapped myself in pretty clothes, added accessories and made sure every corner was tucked tightly with invisible tape so no one could see the real me. I wanted to fit in with all the other perfectly packaged people.
When the paper tears the contents are revealed.
We can wrap our exterior for everyone to ooh and ah our appearance. We can accessorize with expensive cars, luxury vacations, designer clothes and bragging rights to the square footage of our home. But when the paper tears, when the exterior of who we really are is revealed, it is what’s inside that will count.
Nothing reveals that truth more than watching my grandkids open gifts on Christmas day. Never once have I heard them say, “Wow, NeeNee, nice job on the wrapping!” They have never mentioned the crooked paper; the lack of ribbons or when there wasn’t enough paper to cover the box. They only cared about what was inside.
As the countdown to Christmas continues, I urge you to give yourself a break from trying to make the holiday a ‘Pinterest’ dream come true. If everything isn’t wrapped perfectly, if the tree leans a bit and the stockings aren’t hung by the chimney with care, so what!
The best gift ever given was wrapped in swaddling clothes in a manger.