There’s something mystical and inspiring about this time of year. For many of us, there is the tradition of exchanging gifts. Presents thoughtfully selected, lovingly hand-made or purchased in haste. Then as tradition has it, these offerings are carefully wrapped.
This sharing of gifts may be a metaphor for the many ways we share our own intrinsic gifts. Similar to presents offered, we come adorned with many layers of assorted colours, shiny ribbons and bows, plain earthy wrapping or maybe second-hand remnants. No matter how the package is presented, one knows there is something surprising and precious concealed inside.
What do we think of when we consider our own gifts? There are the visible, tangible gifts we may acknowledge in our physical traits, skills and talents. We are grateful for the gifts of family and friends, our homes and our jobs. But there are also those hidden, often unrecognizable treasures. I’m referring to the gifts of Spirit that exist in the moments: accepting the preciousness of our own life, no matter how messy or seemingly imperfect it may be; seeing value in another human being even though their behavior or choices may confuse or upset us; appreciating the beauty of the earth’s tapestry; even recognizing the blessing that comes from delays or cancelled plans.
There are treasures revealed in every moment when we choose Presence. Moments when we truly witness someone sharing his or her story and Light or when we ourselves are witnessed as we share our story and our Light. In true presence, we are given an opportunity to embody compassion, understanding, honesty, humility and peace.
What if the unexpected or upsetting experience is actually shaking us and loosening our carefully placed wrapping? What if underneath the pristine façade, we discover vulnerability and tenderness there, carefully revealing the precious gems of our being? What a gift that would be!
“O God help me to believe the truth about myself – no matter how beautiful it is”
As you enter into the Christmas season, may you discover precious treasures in all your present moment encounters.