Friday, December 26, 2008

Boxing Day

The day after Christmas (Dec. 26) is called by some cultures, "Boxing Day."

If you were, like me, battling shoppers at the Hallmark Store this morning for the 50% mark-down on holiday items, you may think that "boxing day" is in reference to the pushing and shoving of crazed shoppers. Actually, Boxing Day has nothing to do with slugging it out. It DOES have to do with actual boxes.

My mother is the only person I know who, if you call her on the phone today, will answer "Happy Boxing Day." She is a first-generation American from Scotland/Ireland and says that when she was a girl, her family packed up boxes, gifts, to share with others less fortunate.

Boxing Day in Great Britain, was a time of joyful, intentional gift giving to the poor or the shut-in. I thought about this lost holiday when I boxed up a gift my husband gave me.. and head out to return it to Target this morning. I felt sad and guilty, that on this day, once set aside for charitable acts, I continue to be concerned about myself. I stand in line at customer service to be "served" rather than to go "serve" someone else. The more time I spent anonymously a part of the shopping crowds, the more lonely I felt.

It occured to me that the wisdom of boxing day is that it allows our soul to recallibrate. To return to our original design, which is that we are created to love and share love with others.

Happy Boxing Day!


Anonymous said...

This is news I have not heard about before, that of boxing up gifts for the poor on the day after Christmas. Nevertheless, maybe it is something that should be stressed. Last night I heard Rick Warren comment on the service angle - he said, "that instead of us serving others, we want people to serve us. Instead of providing a service, we want serve us, rather serve me."

Anonymous said...

I lived in England for 3 years and no one could explain Boxing Day to me. Thank you Faith's Mom! It would be nice to give our unneeded & unwanted gifts to the less fortunate. Maybe we could do this as a church wide project next
Dec. 26th. It would definatly help carry on the Christmas spirit a few days longer.

Anonymous said...

It's nice to have a day set aside to help others. Let us not forget. There are people that need help everyday and it is a part of what we are supposed to do as christians. Thanks for reminding me.