‘Tis the Season

‘Tis the Season

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I took a trip today to a local variety store that I loath but somehow find myself drawn to whenever I need something.  My son and I went inside to search for a couple of Christmas gifts (because that’s what we do for a month and a half now). While shopping I could feel the love that comes with this season.  My fellow browsers were all overcome with joy as they looked for the perfect gift that would celebrate the birth of the Prince of Peace in just that special way.  Oh the merriment that flowed from aisle to aisle as carts crashed into one another and vulgarity filled the air while people tried to decide if meemaw needed another toaster.  Then it was on to the parking lot to load up my holiday bounty and head home.  As I opened my truck door a fellow well-wisher informed me that someone had crashed into my truck. He showed me the damage to my attacker’s vehicle first and then pointed out where my ride had been violated.  My truck had a mark that, if not pointed out, I never would have noticed while his had a dent like someone had tried to throw a bowling ball through it.  I thanked the hall monitor for his keen eye and then sat in my truck for a while waiting out my assailant.  While I waited I pondered what this fellow must look like and somehow pictured him at Christmas dinner petitioning “Save the neck for me, Clark.”  After a few minutes I decided that it was probably best for all if I just went on back to the hills and left this model citizen to his newly acquired crater.  Although his negligence angered me, he certainly caught the brunt of the incident.image

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I remember a simpler Christmas.  I go back in my mind to early bedtimes and peering out the window hoping to catch a glimpse of Saint Nick.  Bumps in the night almost certainly had to be him and I am certain that I sometimes heard the faint ringing of bells that had to be hanging from flying reindeer.  I even saw a red light once and there is no way it came from an airplane.  Christmas day was spent at grandparent’s homes where cousins would get together and proclaim the wonder of the gifts that we had awakened to find earlier (I know now, much earlier) that morning.  I recall one Christmas where Santa, obviously in his haste to get out of the cove before someone downed one of his deer, knocked the tree flat to the floor.  Christmas was hardly ever white here in Alabama but that was ok because there was always spray-on snow you could buy at the dollar store.  I did not know in those days that so many people saw Christmas in so many different ways.  My small world was settled and Christmas was a wonderful time.image

These days I must admit that I have come to dread this season.  It seems to me that it has become so commercialized and corporate, just a way for stores to get out of the red.  I try every year to enjoy it but a trip to town usually beats out any semblance of holiday cheer that I had mustered.  I can even get down in the dumps about the whole thing if I’m not careful.  Sometimes though, as the world keeps fighting it out for the half-priced flat screen, a still small voice comes by my way.  It is those hours that I find peace in knowing that the true meaning of Christmas is still a new-born Messiah.  The hope of all the world came one night to Bethlehem and that is all that really matters.  When I remember this truth it helps me to not be angry about the shape of things on Earth, and even my new truck scratch, but to pray that all would come to realize just who Christ is.  No matter how we twist this time of year to suit what we believe it should be, Jesus will always be the reason for the season.




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