Tag Archives: love

What Is So Special About Christmas?

For most of us, the Christmas season is special,

  • a welcome time of the year.

But I ask myself the question, Why?

  • WHAT IS SO UNIQUE ABOUT THIS TIME OF THE YEAR!?

assorted gift boxes on brown wooden floor surface
Photo by bruce mars on Pexels.com

It is about the giving and receiving of gifts?

  • Everyone seem to make an effort to give a gift to someone else
    • No doubt receiving a gift is a pleasant experience.
    • Giving a gift that brings joy to someone else
      • is also a beautiful thing.
  • All this shopping for gifts mean more sales for businesses
    • which allows them
      • to hand out bonuses to workers
        • at Christmas.
    • Even without increased revenues,
    • Christmas is when businesses
      • make positive gestures
        • towards employees and the public.
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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Could it be the Bright and Warm Colors of the season?

  • A lot of people put on
    • red, green or gold or other
    • bright and warm colors during this season.
  • Many homes are decorated with multi colored Christmas lights
    • on the outside
    • and, with colorfully decorated ornaments
      • on the inside including on Christmas trees.
  • Many stores and businesses 
    • make dramatic and colorful window displays.
    • On the inside, their products
      • are also beautifully arranged with Christmas decorations.
  • The streets, and city centers in many areas around the world
    • are also impressively decorated.
  • But the Christmas season is all this and more!

Could it be the Wonderful Sounds that fill the air?

  • Lots of music and the sounds of bells and whistles
    • fill the air during this season.
  • Christmas Carols tell the wonderful story
    • of the love of God and
    • of peace and goodwill towards all men.
  • The sounds of the Christmas season evokes nostalgia
    • in the minds of adults
      • about innocent childhood days as well as
      • about simpler days and times;
        • when they looked forward to
          • Christmas gifts, toys, family, and fun.
    • But the Christmas season
      • is special for  all this and more;
      • more than just the sounds of love, joy, peace, and hope that fills the air!

Is it because of the Special Food we enjoy at this time of the year?

  • Everyone goes out of their way to prepare special food and 
    • there is plenty of it
      • at Christmas time;
    • there is also a large variety of it
      • at Christmas time;
    • there is plenty of food and lots of variety
      • of very nice food
        • at Christmas time.
    • But the Christmas season is special
      • for more than lots of very fine food.

Is it the many celebrations, the events we get to attend?

    • Parties among friends and families,
    • nine lessons and carols;
    • special concerts and
    • sporting events etc.,
      • are all mostly very nice experiences.
  • Even without a party to go to,
    • the streets have more people
      • out and about,
        • (shopping, dining, buying and selling, etc.
        • not to forget the traffic);
      • during the Christmas season
      • giving a special ‘event’ type feeling.
  • This is good but Christmas season is special for much more!

All of the above,

  • each have a part to play
    • in making the Christmas Season
      • SO VERY SPECIAL.

But together,

  • the giving and receiving of gifts,
  • the bright and warm colors,
  • the sounds,
  • the special and very fine food,
  • the celebrations and special events;
    • combine to create a very powerful and positive vibe
      • in society.
  • The season is special,
    • because together
      • they make it a season of GOOD WILL
        • wherever Christmas is celebrated!

And we

  • (all of humanity, our families, our communities, our nation, our economies)
  • need AT LEAST ONE SEASON OF GOOD WILL in each year!

MERRY CHRISTMAS TO YOU THE READER AND SUBSCRIBERS!

Please invite others to subscribe to this blog.  Thank You!

 

How to Give the ‘Perfect Christmas Gift’

In Developing Countries;

  • it is easier to come up with gift ideas,
    • (if you have the funds for it),
  • there are many things that people need
    • but do not have; indeed
    • cooked food was the gift that
      • my mother dispatched
        • (through us children)
        • to neighbors, extended family, and friends
        • as a sign of good will at Christmas time;
    • watches, shoes, garments, jewelry, dishes, sheets,
    • pens, books, personal music player, TV, computers, toys, etc.
      • are all also great gift ideas.

In affluent societies like in the Western World

  • coming up with the perfect gift at Christmas
    • can be a challenge;
      • because most people use
        • their regular incomes or
        • credit cards to buy what they
          • need or use regularly.
  • One option is to buy
    • high-end gifts or
    • exotic and rare versions
      • (which can be very pricey)
      • of things people use on a regular basis.
  • Regular folks therefore have to work harder to give the perfect gift;
    • here are a few suggestions of how to give the perfect gift.

The perfect gift takes time

  • Start early, as early as September;
    • listen to everyday conversations,
    • listen to expressed desires and aspirations
    • and make a note for gift ideas from those conversations.

The perfect gift may be an ‘experience’

  • Gift ideas do not have to be ‘things
    • they can be
      • a vacation, cruises, concert, a trip to a destination
      • museum/zoo visits or theme park rides, air fare, special trips;
      • time off work, housekeeping, or baby sitting;
      • an offer of cleaning, laundry, grocery shopping;
      • scholarship, tuition contribution, tutoring,
      • a special radio station/you-tube, blog post announcement, etc.

The perfect gift should be personalized, customized or handmade;

  • an autographed book/ticket/music/fan wear,
    • (from the author or composer, or admired person)
  • monogrammed items:
    • a person’s name, initials or special message,
      • can be inscribed on
        • silverware,  bathroom set, plaque, musical instrument;

The perfect gift must fit the personality of the receiver 

  • Some people want big
    • (the amount spent is impressive)
    • others look for small details
      • (how rare, how much effort, how much thoughtfulness!)
  • Some people are visual
    • others are action oriented, still
    • others are moved by sound, etc.
  • Some people like things, others like ‘experiences.’
  • Some people want to keep up with their peers
    • (they get gifts that are popular)
    • others want to know that ‘they’ are unique
      • (they get gifts just for them);
  • How do you know what is the perfect gift?
    • People usually give the type of gift
      • that THEY like to receive;
      • use that to guide your gift giving
        • TO THEM!
        • not the other way around
        • do not give what you cherish
          • (I once gifted a hat to my wife
            • that she has never used;
            • it was something I fancied for myself!)

The perfect gift may be what someone tells you they want

  • They tell you directly or respond if/when you ask.
  • Some apps make it easy to create a registry for gift requests.

 

 

How Do You Know He/She is the One!

Seriously,

  • How do you know he/she is the One

  • with whom you can have
    • a long lasting, mutually fulfilling, and happy relationship?

Physical Attraction:  What you ‘see’ in the other person says

  • ‘Go ahead, he/she is the one!’
  • This means that their
    • looks, fashion sense,
    • body type, posture and manner of walking
      • showing self- confidence, humility, focus, …;
    • attitude and presence,
    • voice and manner of speaking, etc.,
      • will meet your individual threshold/preference
        • for physical attraction,
        • throughout the relationship.
  • Ignoring this is why I believe that
    • (the TV show)
    • ‘Married at First Sight’ does not appear to work well
      • especially without the necessary cultural history and
      • without a network of supportive and influential family dynamics
        • to support it.
  • Western Culture emphasize/glamorize this far too much
    • when there other equally
      • or more important factors
        • to consider.

Shared Core Values and Approach to Life

  • You observe that you share similar views about
  • the most basic things you believe about life:
    • God, faith, and prayers,
    • money, life and death, family,
    • friends, science, the law, culture,
  • all say ‘Go ahead, he/she is the one!’

BEHIND THE SCENES‘ Real Life Experience(s) say,

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Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com
  • ‘Yes, Go ahead, he/she is the one!’
  • ‘Behind the scenes’ experience concerning
    • earning and spending money,
    • interactions with siblings, parents, relatives,
    • co-workers, bosses, detractors and opponents,
      • (how he/she treats them is how he/she will treat you eventually);
    • leisure and entertainment activities,
    • loss, illness, heartaches, and outstanding joys,
      • all say ‘Go ahead’, he/she is the one!
  • However remember
    • people can and do change.

Sound Logic and Reasoning Confirms it!

  • Please see my last post
  • Use Your head to guard your heart
  • Your heart can guide you
    • but not against objective facts and logic.
  • Remember, you are committing yourself to
    • seek that person’s happiness without precondition
      • in the hope that they will do the same for you.
  • Warren Buffet: 
    • “Buy a stock the way you would buy a house. Understand and like it such that you’d be content to own it in the absence of any market.”
    • Me :  “Enter a long term relationship the way you would buy a house. Understand and like it such that you’d be content to own it in the absence of making any profit off it.”
  • Why have a brain if you do not use it to make important decisions in life?
  • If sound logic and reasoning say “Go ahead, he/she is the one” then
    • do it, He/She is the one.

What about ‘chemistry,’ ‘instinct,’ ‘live in the moment’ or ‘take a risk’?

  • Chemistry‘ is mutual physical attraction and a shared approach to life,
    • (see above), unfortunately,
    • will not be enough for the long haul.
  • ‘Instinct’?
    • You would not invest in the stock market solely by instinct;
      • you need additional information to inform your ‘instinct’;
      • why then would you invest your life based solely on instinct?
  • ‘Live in the moment’?
    • Only if you have only one moment to live.
  • Take a risk?’
    • Would you jump out of an airplane
      • without a parachute and/or
      • without being reasonably sure it works?

We can do this; Let’s do this!!

Note:  I apologies for the gap between the last post and this, Apologies for the gap between the last  post and this.  My excuse? Life Happened (Work, car crashes in the family, etc.).  Email me your questions at reach4himwdray@gmail.com

What Makes Long Term Relationships Work? Really!

Fulfilling, loving, mutually satisfying, meaningful, and long lasting relationships boils down to one thing:

  • both partners in the relationship, without pre-conditions and with 100% sincerity commit themselves to make the other person feel
    • safe, loved, happy, accepted,  appreciated, understood, and
    • cared for.

Be “…like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.”  [Apostle Paul]

To do this requires

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  • maturity,

    • (from both sides),
    • (psychological, social, and emotional);
    • children are innocent and beautiful to behold
      • but they can also be incredibly selfish, foolish, insensitive and unstable;
    • ‘man-child’ partners, and ‘baby-girl’ ‘diva’ personalities
      • find it hard to focus selflessly on others, and
      • often ruin the chances for long term happy relationships;
  • trust, and vulnerability, because

    • to love without pre-conditions is risky, and
    • to open up to real love means to open up to deep hurt;
      • those who hurt us the most and
      • those we hurt the most,
        • are the ones that are closest to us;
          • they give the most happiness and/or cause
            • the deepest pain;
  • open and effective communication meaning

    • willingness to speak
      • about your fears, wants, and feelings
      • in a way that your partner can understand
        • without being pushed away(!), and
    • willingness to ‘listen’, and
    • willingness to learn(!)
      • from the other person;
  • the ability to forgive and overlook your partner’s fault(s):

    • (a generous spirit/heart);
    • ‘The teeth and tongue will get in each other’s way sometimes,’ and
      • it’s not pleasant when they do, but
      • they must find a way to work together
        • for the greater good of the body(!)
          • (in this case the relationship);
    • An ever growing record of hurts in a relationship
      • will crush it.
      • Let your relationship be like a room,
        • a pleasant place  where you both like to relax
          • and savor each other’s company; one
        • that is swept clean daily,
          • of the dust/dirt
            • (hurts of past days, weeks, and months),
        • whose windows and doors are constantly open
          • to allow sunlight and
            • fresh breeze through.

“When Somebody Loves You Back”
(Teddy Pendergrass [1979])

It’s so good lovin’ somebody;
When somebody loves you back

To be loved and be loved in return
It’s the only thing that my heart desires
Just appreciate the little things I do
Oh, you’re the one who’s got me inspired
Keep on liftin’, liftin’ me higher

We can build a world of love, a life of joy
Make our goal each other’s happiness
I will do for you anything that I can
Oh, everyday I wanna do a little more
Do a little more, just a little bit more

Said now 70-30
Now 60-40
Talkin’ ’bout a 50-50 love, yeah

More tomorrow!  You Can Do This, Let’s Do This!

Note:  I have been married 36 years, with 4 grown children, and have spent 30 years in ministry including counselling many couples, at all stages of their relationships. You can say I have been ‘around the block’ a few times. 

Email me your questions on relationships and I will answer them as best as I can.

 

 

Life After Defeat?…Yes!

How do we recover from ‘defeat?’

  • The pregnancy test came back negative.
    • Again!
  • The lab tests came out positive:
    • you do have the disease!
  • You failed the comprehensive final exam
    • Can’t graduate.
    • Can’t advance to the next level.
    • You are not going to be the professional you always wanted to be
      • nurse, doctor, engineer, lawyer, certified accountant, analyst…
      • Not just yet!

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  • Your application for the position was turned down;
    • someone else got it because
      • they were better qualified, better suited.
  • You lost the competition;
    • It was so close, but someone else was faster, stronger, smarter, had a bit more
      • again!
  • Your significant other walked out on you;
    • you have tried everything
      • but they still decided to walk away.
    • Friends and family have given up trying to talk to him/her.
    • Counseling has not worked.
    • Prayers (many) seem not to have worked.
    • Giving selflessly to the relationship has not worked
      • either!
  • Your grown children won’t take correction.
    • They refuse to follow the law, guide their family, manage their finances, their health, and
    • trouble, like a train from a mile away is heading their way
      • you can see it, you can hear it coming!

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First,

  • Separate the event,
    • ‘What happened’
    • from WHO YOU ARE!
      • your innate, God-given value
        • unique
        • equal to that of every other person on the planet
        • possessing the same one unit of life
        • having the same number of hours in a day, days in a month, etc.
        • defined by qualities you posses
          • loyal, loving, sincere, trusting, diligent
          • gifted, patient, kind, selfless, etc. 
      • Someone who is loved
        • by God (certainly)
        • by loving family (children, parents, siblings, friends,
          • when this is the case)
        • by the right kind of person
          • when they get to know you
          • if they get to know you
          • it’s their choice not yours
          • it’s their loss if they don’t
      • Someone who can still succeed!!

Next Steps Tomorrow

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You can do it!  Let’s Do This!

Follow me on twitter, and Facebook.  Contact me at reach4himwdray@gmail.com