I have many memories of Christmas, beginning when I was a little girl, growing up on Long Island, New York. My memories never had anything to do with presents. It was something else. I’m asking myself today, “Where are you Christmas?”
When I was little, my Aunt Lucile used to come to visit. She was my favorite part of Christmas. I’d wait up for her to come to bed. She always slept in my room and we would talk about everything. She treated me so special. Is Christmas about feeling special?
I spent time as a child gathering small presents for my family. My Grandma Hertz gave me $5 to spend on gifts. That was a lot in those days. You could buy a punch bowls with cups for a dollar. I did that for my parents and bought other presents for Grandma and Aunt Lucile. Is Christmas about giving?
Another significant Christmas experience was my first year away from home. My parents were never ones for big trees. I remember my husband and I buying a huge tree that took up half our living room for my first independent Christmas. I felt free. Is Christmas about feeling free?
For ten years, I had been a member of a very restrictive religion. I remember my first Christmas after leaving this religion. I felt a deep gratitude for my family and the traditions that I seemed to have lost during those years. Is Christmas about gratitude? Is it about traditions?
Now, I am a minister. I am a representative of a new way of thinking called New Thought. I believe that the Spirit of the Christ lives within each of us. It is the part of ourselves that intuitively knows that we are part of something greater, that we are Divine. Is Christmas about accepting our Divinity and living It?
Last night, as my husband and I decorated our tree and house, we sat in wonder. Even though we had been so busy these last few months, culminating with our move to a new home this week, we still felt it important to put up our tree and decorations and honor Christmas? As we sat admiring the tree, I told my husband that I just wanted to experience Christmas this year and enjoy it in some small way each day. I wasn’t sure what I meant, but I know that as we turn to that Light within us, It turns to us. As I put this intention out into my life, it must return to me with the knowing that I am experiencing Christmas in the most perfect way.
The world is in a state of great change right now. The COVID19 experience changed all of us, some more significantly than others. I believe that we must allow ourselves to change. Nothing is the same as it was and it seems useless to try to put things back together in the same way. Evolution doesn’t work that way. It moves forward and upward. Christmas and the Holidays, I believe, must change the same way. It’s great to buy presents and eat good food, but something else within me is being born this Christmas Season. I will allow it to unfold and trust in the revelation of Christmas in my own heart. When I ask, “Where are you Christmas?,” I will be open to a new answer.
Much Love and Aloha,
Rev. Rita Andriello-Feren, Co-Founding Director CSL Kaua`i and the Institute of Magnificence and Author of “What Do I Need to KNOW? 101 Thoughts That Changed My Life” and “This Thing Called Treatment,” both available on Amazon.
One thought on “Where Are You Christmas?”
What a beautiful exploration of the meaning of Christmas! Mahalo nui loa.