It’s not the gift, but the thought that counts.
That quote by American author and clergyman Henry Jackson van Dyke was something I grew up hearing, particularly around Christmas time.
It’s not surprising a clergyman would coin such a phase. Perhaps it sprang from the need to help assuage the anxiety, guilty and disappointment people customarily feel with when they can’t afford to buy lavish gifts for their families and friends. This pithy phase not only provided a pass, but gave permission to focus on what’s important when giving a gift: the earnest gesture of thoughtfulness. Continue reading