The warm greetings of the season
I’m pretty sure the folks at the post office will be glad to see me write this article.
One of the traditions of the holiday season is sending Christmas cards to loved ones both near and far away. Our post office has benefitted from this tradition for almost two centuries. In fact, it is my understanding that the tradition of sending Christmas cards began in England in the 1800s by someone who worked for the post office.
During the holiday season last year, I wrote an article on the joy of sending Christmas cards. I got lots of great comments from people who read that article and shared with me how much they also cherished that meaningful tradition.
It gives me a great lift, and a warm feeling in my heart to write these greetings each year to people I know and love. Many of them I do not see during the year, and it is the only time we hear from each other. These notes to and from loved ones keep us connected, and this act makes the spirit of Christmas ring in my heart, just as much as the lights and decorations of the holiday season.
I admit that sending Christmas cards is fairly costly these days, especially if you send a lot of them. In January of this year, just before the postage increased by 10 percent, I purchased enough Christmas stamps to send out Christmas cards for five years. I’m just hoping all those stamps don’t burn a hole in my envelope of stamps. (I’m also hoping the post office stays in business.)
I stay pretty busy in my life, and it’s sometimes hard for me to find time to do the things I really enjoy, but one thing I never want to be too busy to do is to send those Christmas cards. When I receive a card in the mail, I consider that a gift. I get excited about every card I receive and I display each card as if it is a trophy in our home during the season.
Now, what do I do with the Christmas cards after the season is over?
First of all, I make sure I have a record of what Christmas cards I have received, and the ones I sent. I have a box of index cards for this purpose (old school methods). When Christmas is over and I take the cards down, I keep whatever notes are with the cards, and then I tear the beautiful front of the card off from the back of the back of the card. The backs are thrown away, and the fronts are saved.
Each year, our church makes door hangers using the fronts of Christmas cards that have been saved by members of our church family. These door hangers become invitations distributed around the community, inviting people to come to our church for services held during the advent season. Christmas cards are the gifts that keep on giving.
Enjoy your holiday season, and remember the reason for the season.
— My love to all,
• • •
Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other.
— Romans 12:10