Leif and I are huge fans of holiday cards and letters. One of our annual traditions is that we save them until Christmas morning when we lay in bed and open them all together. By the time we’re finished, Hershey is buried in blankets and envelopes and note cards.
But this year, I received a holiday e-card (which is a lot harder to save) and went ahead and read it. Instead of the everyday boasting that fills many Christmas cards, my friend wrote of his brokenness.
His words haunted me:
Ever feel like you have wasted a few years of your life? I realized that I have taken far too much for granted in life. I have wasted some precious years in the pursuit of my own agendas. All I can say is for normally taking some pride in being smart, I have been kind of stupid these past couple of years... THANKFULLY, I have a chance to improve, IF I can get some help from friends and associates.
Here are some things I have realized and seek to correct:
- I have taken too many people for granted, as if they are here to serve me and not the other way around. This includes friends, family and work. I have been selfish, as if the world owed me something rather than the other way around, and I know I need to work on serving others more faithfully.
- I often try too hard to please too many people in image - this is being willing to portray different images to different people. It is duplicitous.
- I haven't stuck to the core values of faith, hope and love. I have kind of worked to try and build a business - at all costs to my friends and community.
Ultimately, I just want to say sorry to those who my selfishness or lack of diligence has either hurt or offended. I know that list could possibly be long. If you are on that list, in a "My Name is Earl" sort of fashion, I'd like to work through these wrongs, if possible.
I feel like I may be opening a huge can of worms here, I am not sure I am even ready to receive the feedback I may get... I just feel like it may be time to stop pretending like nothing is wrong and work to repair broken friendships and relationships. I think I am learning how precious they are and wanted to show gratitude is sometimes preceded by repentance.
This holiday card left me wonderstruck because of its honesty, repentance, and longing to make things right in every relationship.
This holiday season may we be people who work to strengthen, rebuild, and develop our relationships with others so they can be as strong as ever—and a source of celebration and gratitude for years to come. [Tweet this]
What’s the most amazing holiday card you’ve received this year? What makes an ordinary card extraordinary to you?