Over the years, our country has allowed Christmas Day to evolve into a shameful orgy of gift-giving. I don't think I know anyone who would disagree with this. Of course, I freely admit that for many years I was a part of the problem. If you have children, you want them to feel the love of the holiday, and you do not want them to be looked upon as less fortunate than their friends.
Fortunately, I am older now, and (hopefully) wiser. All those gifts we gave our children over the years did not in any way make them better people or, more importantly, bring them closer to God or foster a relationship with Jesus.
To this day, I recall the Christmas of 1954. I was ten years old. And my parents, trying their best to make sure I had a wonderful day, spent much more money than they could afford to give me a great Christmas. They gave me a set of World Book encyclopedias. I later found out that this set of books cost them $100. This was a very large amount of money 56 years ago. There were other gifts, as well. I thought I had a very nice Christmas until I went outside and found out that my friend Walter had got a football and a BB gun; and my friend Tony had got a baseball, bat and glove. In my wisdom and maturity I stomped inside the house and informed my parents that I had been "gypped". My dad would have killed me on the spot if my mom had not intervened.
Years later, I asked my dad what kind of gifts his family gave each other when he was a boy. He said they usually gave things like fruit---apples, oranges and bananas and such. He said they had wonderful Christmases back then, and no one even thought about gifts that much. The day was more about Jesus and celebrating Him.
My, how far we've come! Here is hoping we can begin to return to celebrating Christmas for the right reasons.
The fact is, I neither need nor want anything for Christmas in the way of gifts. Most of the people I know have no real needs, either. The bottom line for me is this: God has given me far more in this world than I deserve, and I shall be thanking Him for that on Christmas Day, just as I do every other day.