If there were no presents at all, would you still want to celebrate Christmas?
100 years ago, a little seven-year-old boy named Homer Mellen sent Santa Claus a letter asking for “a box of paints, also a nine cent reader, and a school bag to put them in.” And he added that if Santa happened to have “any nuts, or candy, or toys to spare” that he would love to have some. My, how times have changed. Today, nearly all of us expect to be showered with presents on Christmas morning, and then almost immediately people begin posting photos of their “Christmas loot” on social media websites such as Facebook. And as you will see below, the “Rich Kids of Instagram” have taken boasting about wealth to an extreme that nobody has ever seen before. Our society has become deeply, deeply materialistic, and whatever “meaning” Christmas once may have had has become almost completely lost at this point.
When I first came across this 100 year old Christmas list, I was quite stunned. First of all, this young boy was able to express himself far better than most seven-year-old boys can today. Secondly, his letter to Santa reflected a sense of humility and thoughtfulness that is extremely rare in this day and age. In case you cannot read the letter that I have posted below, here is what it says…
“Dear Santa Claus,” the boy begins in cursive handwriting. “Will you please send me a box of paints, also a nine cent reader, and a school bag to put them in.”
He modestly continues, “And if you have any nuts, or candy, or toys to spare, would you kindly send me some.” If so, Homer concludes, “You will please a seven year old boy.”
The Mellen family kept and cherished this note for 98 years in a little box containing “private little things like locks of hair, or the first picture that was taken,” Mellen explained, in order to “put away for memories for grandchildren.”
I don’t know about you, but that letter touched my heart, and it made me long for an era that has long since passed away.
In 2015, things are very different. Most people spend the month of December eagerly anticipating all of the stuff that they are about to get, and this is ingrained in our children from a very early age.
If you don’t think that this is true, just spend some time on the “Rich Kids Of Instagram” Tumblr page this holiday season. You will see example after example of rich kids boasting about the stuff they hauled in over their holidays.
To these young adults, Christmas is far better when you are rich. And from a worldly perspective, it is hard to argue with their logic. Just check out how “rich kid” Serena Marron spent…