I am growing to absolutely adore one of our new neighbors!
She is a recently retired woman who lives by herself, and she is loving the fact that our family with two small kiddos lives so close to her.
She invited us over to her house last night for cookies.
We head over to her place after dinner. We walk through the front door to a beautifully decorated home and make our way to her dining room where I see she has a plate of homemade shortbread cookies out for us. She has my kids sit down at her counter then reaches around her refrigerator and pulls out two plates in the shape of snowmen with red napkins on top. She places the plates in front of each child. They lift the napkins to find a cookie decorated to look like the face of a snowman. They both give little squeals of excitement as they begin shoving them into their mouths.
She pours my husband and I a glass of eggnog and we sit and talk while the kids eat their cookies.
After the kids finish devouring their treat she asks us to come into her living room where she has two gift bags sitting on the carpet next to her fireplace. She hands a gift to each set of eager little hands. They open to find coloring books with accessories.
She then pulls out a special book to read to them. They sit on the couch next to her as she begins to read.
She puts the book aside and sits down on the floor and rolls a ball back and forth with my son.
We were absolutely spoiled!
As I watched her, my eyes were open to the fact that, ..”she is so incredibly delighted by doing all this for us!”
Christmas is a time for giving. And we know that we bless others as we give to them – but also, in return we are blessed!!
There is something that is so rich and deeply satisfying when we serve and love people with pure and selfless motives.
By allowing my neighbor to open her home to us and serve and love on my family – according to her terms – we were allowing her to receive this kind of blessing.
I think it’s easy to become so focused on the ways that I can give to others (especially during Christmas), that I forget to allow others to love and serve me too – to be an instrument in how they experience this joy of giving.