The best gifts given aren’t tied with a bow. They don’t fit in a box, to be packaged and sent. Nor are they on sale, or marked down twenty-percent. Although, quite remarkable indeed. They come from the heart, no need to dig deep.

Kindness and charity are a few I speak of. As gloriously unembellished as the wings of a dove. Too immense to contain, their rewards are immeasurable. Mending wounded hearts and feelings with a word…a look…a smile.

True treasures for gifting are found within one’s own self. Yet, emerges as a monumental task. To be asked to treat others as well as yourself. Empathy does not reside in store. It’s in your heart. Give freely. Then give even more.

Tolerance of ‘diversity’ could be one of the first gifts offered. So different are we. Yet, we are all human beings. A genuine gift would be: absolute acceptance of others. Since what is learned, is emulated, throughout generations.

Setting a good example is such a wonderful gift. It’s on a child’s heart that we leave our mark. Thus, as they grow and reflect on what they’ve been taught. Let it be compassion and kindness, to everyone their lives touch.

Sadly, humility is often forgotten. Yet, the unique gift it carries is clearly un-regrettable. To swallow one’s pride and take a genteel step back. Is akin to a flower revealing petals to the sun. Warm and inviting. Let’s not forget this one.

Respect is as infinite as stars in the sky. It gives back. It pays forward. It never fails to impress. Earning its weight in gold, respect starts with you and hastily spreads. Indeed, a worthwhile endeavor. Respect is a gift to always remember.

Random acts of kindness never go unnoticed. Neither should they go carelessly unheeded. To offer such an altruistic gift to a stranger or friend. Is greater than our minds are able to comprehend.

Now, laughter is a jolly knee-slapping gift. Combined with happiness and joy, it mimics heavenly bliss. In addition, having a quick and ready smile, creates the magic to turn frowns upside down. Give cheer. Give joy. Give laughter all year.

Which brings us to a favorite quote by the great poet Alexander Pope. “To err is human, to forgive, divine.” Yes, as divine as forgiveness was centuries ago, it’s still one of the most consummate gifts you may bestow. Forgive. Let go. Witness blessings flow.

However, the greatest gift of all is Love. Endless, timeless and free for all eternity. Love embraces all other gifts, it’s told.  Softening hardened hearts and capturing your soul. So, love. Love without expecting any in return. Love without judgement, for you too may be discerned. Love without limits, or boundaries to confine. Authentic love is unconditional, all the time. Love freely, without hesitation. Love is easy, when true.
Love, hugs and smiles…

Writer’s note: Friends, the best gifts come straight from the heart and will forever be free. Free from obligation. Free from expectations. Free from judgement. They cost nothing to give. Yet the rewards are priceless. It makes my heart smile to consider these FREE gifts. Gifts without score cards attached. Uniquely ours, yet blessing so many. This year, give the long-awaited FREE gift you’ve been holding back…and be blessed, my friend.