One of my favorite family traditions is watching “It’s a Wonderful Life” together every year just before Christmas. There are several scenes throughout the movie that move me to tears and every year when it ends, I feel grateful for the time spent with my little family. I feel grateful for their desire to spend time together. Whether it is time spent doing chores, or singing, or laughing, or playing, or cooking, or eating, or praying, or watching a movie, it doesn’t really matter. We like each other, we enjoy our time spent together, and together we are the best versions of ourselves.
It is remarkable to me that God blessed me with these little beings. They have had such a tremendous effect on my soul. As parents we think it is our duty to shape our children into people that will bring good to others, but I often feel that I am the one being molded. As I go about my daily duties, I look within, I ask myself if my attitude and my choices reflect what and who I hope my children will be. I ask myself if the way I spend my time, talent and treasure are really of value. I work to become a better version of myself in hopes that my children will look to me as an example of discipleship.
I am often brought to tears watching my children together. Whether it is the two youngest boys holding hands as we walk into Mass or the older children snuggling, dancing and/or laughing, their love for each other is so inspiring to me. They are great role models to one another and to ME and for that I am eternally grateful! They show one another patience and kindness and affection. They are each unique and they have qualities that help our family as a whole be the best that it can be.
Each year as we watch George Bailey experience the world without him in it, I think to myself how blessed I am to have these wonderful people in my life. Each of them have helped me to become someone better than I was before them. Every day as a mom and wife teaches me lessons and I am living proof that God is forgiving and patient.
I told my husband this morning that I am so in love with our kids, they are simply precious beings! To which he responded, “I will remind you of that in two days when you are asking if it is time for school to start back up!” 😉 They are by NO MEANS perfect, just perfectly ours. They have hearts that are full of the love of Christ, they are caring and courageous and generous and funny and smart and loud and messy and sweet and warm.
During this Christmas season I pray that each of us will look within our own hearts and examine what gifts we have to share with those we encounter in our daily lives. Let us focus on being present in our children’s lives and sharing character building activities and lessons with each other. Use each day to help them become a “George Bailey” a true someone that will make this world a better place. The littlest choices we make in our daily lives often have the greatest impact on the world around us.
Let us keep Christ in our hearts and let our family be inspired by The Holy Family, whatever God asks of us, let us be willing.
Merry Christmas to each of you and may God bless you and your family this coming year!