I have finally gotten around to putting up some decorations inside the house today. I have decided that my tree is really ugly, (the fake one) and I want a new one. I also decided that I was bored with the same old placement of things. I want a new dining room set, I want to paint, I wanted a new garland for my mantle. I want, I want, I want! It made me laugh as I caught myself in this cycle of thought. What has changed that these things aren’t good enough anymore? Nothing, they are fine I decide. At least for now, they have to be. So I move to the next box and find that I have not one, not two, not even three but four manger scenes. Because the enormous picture of Mary and Jesus that blesses my front hall isn’t enough…or the one in my living room over my love seat? It is so true that everywhere you turn in my house you are met with some kind of spiritual representation. Or as my friend Lisa would say, “you can’t swing a cat without finding a holy object,” so that when Christmas comes it is even more ramped up! I can’t help but laugh, (sometimes as I startle visitors!). The truly funny thing here is that I didn’t buy any of these objects listed, they were all given to me in one way or another. Which is one reason that I display them, because the thought that was put into it warms me. What is it that moves us to share these images with one another? Sometimes, I think it is a way of people telling me that they understand me (I am so misunderstood!!). Other times I think it is a way of wanting themselves to be understood, an underlying “I get it”. Sometimes I wonder if it is a way of having that one tangible item that represents what Christmas really is. Sure the item was purchased in the commercial sense, but it was chosen in the spiritual sense. We long to share our faith with each other, I believe this. No matter what our faith is, no matter how we are called to God, we long to know that someone out there also hears that call. So we pick an object, we wrap it, and gift it. With it, we sometimes gift our deepest sense of what it means to be connected to one another in the heart of God. As I proceed through my day and move to the next room which will be taken up with nutcrackers, (just to offer a little balance) I will be blessed in the knowledge that I am not alone on this journey, that I have been given the greatest gift of companionship one could ask for. The voice in my head that was focusing on what I wanted, will be muted by the one that offers up prayers of gratitude for what I already have.