Christmas is a time where we each have an opportunity to inspire hope to each other through the holidays and all year long.
You may ask how can I inspire hope through the holidays when I don’t have enough for myself? Whether you know it or not you have an endless supply of the most precious gift you can ever share with someone and that is love.
Most people have very fond memories of Christmas morning with their family and friends opening presents, Christmas parties or meals together.
Our family has a tradition of eating Spinach Feta Strata on Christmas morning, we spend about one hour on Christmas Eve putting the dish together so that all we have to do is pop it in the oven to bake while we open our presents and by the time we are done with our presents breakfast is ready. The memory of that tradition is so strong I can smell the cheese and spinach.
Take a moment and think back to your fondest memory of Christmas mourning, Imagine sitting down and giving presents and opening your presents, the faces of your children and remember how you felt when you got the toy you asked Santa for and the smiles on the faces of your family and friends.
Those memories for me are priceless and they keep me focused on the true meaning of Christmas which is giving.
Yesterday my wife and I were putting ornaments on our tree and there was one box of ornaments that is very special to me because each ornament we bought when we were on vacation, sometimes it was just Valerie and me and sometimes it was with the whole family. Each one of those thirty-one ornaments that we put on the tree brought me back to the place it was bought and all the feelings and memories that I felt at that wonderful time. As I picked up the ornament we bought last year in Lake Tahoe I was immediately on the shore of Lake Tahoe walking with Valerie, I can feel the wind on my face, smell the food from the Italian restaurant and walking through the little shop where we bought the ornament. I felt refreshed and recharged because we had spent a week on vacation doing absolutely anything we wanted without stress or worry, It is a wonderful memory I will never forget.
I know that this time can be very difficult for people who have lost a loved one especially a parent, spouse or child. This is where we can really have an impact by helping that person remember the happy memories they had with the one they lost.
There is a tool called the Law of Substitution and if we practice we can use this law to shift our thoughts from negative to positive, from sad to happy and by recalling the happy thoughts we can bring back all the wonderful feelings attached to those thoughts or memories anytime we want.
Now you have a tool that you can use to empower yourself with hope and a tool that you can share with others and bring them hope. if you see someone who is struggling this holiday season take a moment to speak with them and practice using this tool and you will be surprised at the impact you can have and the hope it can give them.
In conclusion, I would like to invite you to practice using this tool every time you look at your Christmas tree remember who gave you that special ornament or holiday decoration or a time when you went with your family to buy your Christmas tree and feel the feelings you felt back then.