Worship Service with some COVID-19 precautions Sundays at 11 AM
December 4, 2022
"Turning Away and Turning Toward"
First posted on December 6, 2020
To the Church Family
Gift Wrap and Bows
December 4, 2022
By John Wiederholt
The sermon for the church this week is about how the joy which we feel as we approach Christmastide in Advent is tinged with a certain amount of dread. I’m going to be serious about this on Sunday morning, but in this space, I’m writing about a trivial dread which I feel every year.
I dread gift wrapping and making bows. It’s not that I am complaining, really. After I have made a mess of a package or two someone usually offers to help me. But the main reason that someone offers to help me is that I am just really bad at gift wrapping. In fairness, I think that I am pretty good at choosing gifts for people and my family is pretty good at dropping hints. But faced with an ordinary gift box with straight edges and square corners, I’m pretty much lost.
My wrapping paper ends up wrinkled or shriveled up on one side or one corner. At the very least the overlap will be crooked. I think I have a pretty good sense of time, but my sense of space is nothing to brag about. I measure the needed gift wrap in hand-spans or even with a ruler, but somehow, once cut, the resulting sheet is usually just an inch less than I really need. Everyone else in my family seems capable of straight sharp creases and tidy corners. Their raw edges are neat and straight and folded under. Mine are characteristically not any of those things. “Did your six-year-old granddaughter wrap that for you?” No, she can do a much better job.
Then, there is the inevitable present that is shaped like a pineapple sitting on a banana. Don’t ask. And there are bows. OK. I can do a basic tie-your-shoe bow although they are rarely exactly even. But those amazing multi-loop bows that look like shiny chrysanthemums and have the loose ends curled? Not a chance.
Thankfully, by the time I’ve done a package or two Kym or somebody offers to do the rest for me. They do their best to hide their pity and the results are beautiful. And in emergencies when help is not on the way there are gift bags and pre-made bows.
This has me thinking that the Lord draws us into loving caring families and loving caring church families so that we can use our strengths to support the weaknesses of others and receive help and support for the ways the we fall short. The ways we come to one another’s aid are not an official sacrament like the Lord’s Supper that we are celebrating this morning, they are, nevertheless, sacred activities. Helping one another with the challenges of the Holy season reminds us of the Spirit working in our midst and they add a special joy to the Advent season.
[Photo public domain no attribution required]
Resources for Helping those Suffering Food Insecurity
City of Martinsville-Healthy Food Hub
Food Insecurity in Henry County
Many Hands Giving Food in Henry County
PCUSA – Hunger action Congregations
A letter from our partners at Grace Network, Martinsville/Henry County
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