Suarez-Orendain: Checking


THE commercial symbol of Christmas is now checking his gift list twice. The naughty may not be able to receive a gift from Santa Claus. But the nice are assured to have a gift under the Christmas tree.

Many people are by now full of ideas on what to give. So for a change I thought of making a list of things we can do beyond Christmas. Here it is.

LIST TO REMEMBER. This year start a list of friends and loved ones to remember. You can do it with text messages or lunch dates or visits.

You can also remember the people around you throughout the year. Rosse recalls a year when she gave a neighbor four bars of lavender soap. It was not even Christmas. She just felt like giving.

The woman was overjoyed. “This is something I needed. My husband is between jobs. Most of our money goes to food and fare for the children when they go to school. I can hardly buy bath soap now.”

List to forgive. The time to forgive or to ask for forgiveness is now. It is difficult to swallow humble pie. But once you do it, you will feel your chest feeling lighter and your heart feeling cleaner.

List to conquer. Give yourself the gift of freedom from certain fears. Are you afraid of heights? Stuff your backpack and fly to the moon. Well, maybe not that far. Cebu is near enough. There are several adventure spots in Cebu that offer zip line experience. The feeling of flying and the reality of being up in the air could help you beat your old fear.

Think of other “Fear Factor”-worthy areas you need to conquer.

List to achieve. Perhaps you are no longer young. You feel you have missed the train to your real calling in life.

Did you once dream of becoming a visual artist? There are short-term courses or summer seminars on art. If it is too late for you to become a lawyer, satisfy your desire to know more about legal matters by visiting the law library in local universities.

What else do you want to achieve? What is holding you back? Stand up, get dressed and get moving.

List to be better. This sounds like a New Year’s resolution, but it is not. Christmas is a time for gifts, just as Christ came into world history to give humanity the gift of salvation.

This Christmas give yourself the gift of being better. Look into your heart. What is inside? If it is too full of hatred, what can you do to remove all or at least some of the trash? There are many self-help websites and books that offer suggestions on how to better cope with weaknesses.

Being better can also mean better at what you do. If there is something that should not stop, it is learning. Keep learning even when you feel you know it all.

I have spoken. The ball is now in your court. What list would you like to make? You do not need Santa to help you in this.


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