Christmas is the perfect event for people exchanges gifts together. However, do you ever ask that Why do we give gifts on Christmas? Gift-giving in Christmas is traditional activities, and today, it has many developments. Do you agree that exchange things are a rule of social we follow, so that it may explain why gift-giving is a cherished part of Christmas?
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In the Christian religion, the practice of giving gifts at Christmas is traced back to the gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh that were given to the Christ child by the three Magi. The magi were kings from the East, wise men who traveled a great distance following a star, to find the Christ child and to bring him gifts. The visit of the Magi to the Christ child was originally celebrated on the Feast of Epiphany on January 6th. Over time, the tradition of giving gifts came to be more associated with Christmas than with Epiphany. It is the time from Christmas to Epiphany in the Church calendar – from December 25th through January 6th – that is recognized as the “twelve days of Christmas” from the old Christmas carol.
The common explanation for Why do we give gifts on Christmas is that gifts are given at Christmas to remind those celebrating the holiday of the gifts brought to the baby Jesus to celebrate his birth.
Today, we all give gifts at Christmas for our own reasons. For some, it is a way to celebrate the Christian holiday. For others, it is a special time to let family and friends know that you care by giving gifts. At times, giving gifts at Christmas becomes almost mechanical, and a chore; when this happens, it is worth stepping aside for a few moments to consider why exactly you give gifts at Christmas.
For centuries, there has been some form of gift-giving throughout the Advent season, but for most people, these were traditionally small, homemade or edible such as needlework, wooden toys or baked goods and played nowhere near as big a role as they do in the modern Christmas.
But slowly, “Christmas creep” began to change that tradition: advertisers began suggesting people give a few gifts early on Christmas Day and slowly, people began giving all of their gifts at Christmas instead of waiting until New Year’s.
It just so happened that all of the advertising encouraging gift-giving took place during an era of industrialization, during which urban workers who had moved from the farms for work started purchasing more and more mass-produced, commercial gifts to give to each other.
“The prescient among the nation’s businessmen saw that they could use the emerging custom of Christmas gift-giving to increase their sales,” writes William B. Waitts in his book The Modern Christmas in America: A Cultural History of Gift Giving. “Ever since, they have moved purposefully to expand gift giving in America and have enjoyed the rewards of their effort.”
Gifts are given at Christmas time for various reasons. In some cases, it is a way of celebrating the Christian holy day – the birth of Christ. In others, it is a special time to express love and appreciation to family and friends. Gift giving at this time of the year is also used to manipulate others. The gold ring given in December is expected to pay high dividends in January. If payback is not forthcoming, prepare to hear, “Please return my ring or else!”
As you know, these column advocates giving more than anything else. However, we would not suggest that persons put themselves under undue pressure at Christmas time to buy gifts despite the bombardment of advertisements for phones, clothing, furniture, household appliances, toys, gadgets, jewelry and Christmas specials to help brighten the holidays.
Some of the best things we can give do not have monetary value. They are priceless and can be appreciated by everyone. Volunteering our time and energy for the benefit of others – especially the needy – is priceless. Some of us could comb or trim the hair of an elderly person who can’t do this for him/herself, contribute time to The Salvation Army or help to serve meals at a facility for the homeless. We could even volunteer to wrap charity presents, even though we are not able to purchase one ourselves.
Visiting and praying with a sick friend, relative or neighbor is a million-dollar gift not sold in the shop. So while we seek God’s mercy to help us make it through the rigors of life, especially at Christmas time, let us show mercy to others, especially at this time of the year. There could be no better gift.
We hope you find your answer for Why do we give gifts on Christmas. However, there are some meaningful ideas we can do at Christmas, not only give gift-exchange, they are feeding the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, clothe the naked, shelter the homeless, visit the sick, visit those in prison, instruct the ignorant, counsel the doubtful, admonish the sinner, comfort the sorrowful, forgive injuries, bear wrongs patiently, pray for others.