I’m not much into getting gifts. It isn’t that I don’t like “stuff”. But I have a lot of it and am constantly trying to winnow out what is no longer important. Gifts are a lovely blessing of the heart, and yet they tend to clutter up my life. I prefer a hug, a flower, a sweet smile, even a cookie…anything but stuff.
So I’m not enthused about the group practice of bringing random gifts to gatherings over the holidays, drawing numbers, and ending up with a gift. Rarely are they useful to me. The game is fun. I’m just not content with the outcome.
I won’t lengthen the story with the details but I received two such gifts this last month. I enjoyed a lovely bowl for a few days and then turned over to a friend who had coveted it but couldn’t retain it in the game of “Steal the Gift”. The other is a lovely book calendar from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Paintings of exotic birds face each weekly page. Stunning!
I’m hooked on electronics, however, so I realized that I wouldn’t use the calendar to good advantage. I tried to press it on my husband but he prepares ahead and had already chosen one for 2014.
I put the book in my car, thinking I would happen upon someone who would enjoy it. (All the time admiring its beauty.)
This morning I have been struggling with the concept of keeping it. Because it is beautiful. Because I really like it.
So I contemplate how I could enjoy it. Would I ever go so far as to copy from my electronic calendar to a page? No, why would I when I have a phone that loads my calendar through the “cloud” with no effort on my part. I suppose I could use it as a birthday book; but I’ve done that in the past and the book sat ignored as I listened to the beep on my calendar to remember birthdays.
I could even go so far as tear out the pages with my list of activities for each day and enjoy my errands.
But isn’t that a waste?* Do I deserve to use this calendar when I don’t really need it? Isn’t here someone, somewhere who needs it and would be thrilled to own it?
Do I deserve to use it for the sheer joy of it?
This story has no conclusion.*
1. Perhaps the time I spend thinking about it is a more of a waste than tearing the pages from a disposable calendar.
2. It does validate my theory that possessions can be a curse instead of a blessing.