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Thanksgiving is gone, Christmas is coming soon, and a new year is just around the corner. For me, it is difficult to get into the season with all the warm weather we have recently seen.
Do not get me wrong, I do not want to see ice and snow, but I do like cooler weather for this time of year. It is only five days from winter for goodness sakes.
It is always exciting to see the decorations, listen to Christmas music and attend the local parades. I especially enjoy attending church Christmas programs – especially the programs with the children singing about or reenacting the true Christmas Story.
Another thing I always do is watch the old Christmas programs, such as “It’s a Wonderful Life,” “Miracle on 34th Street,” any of the many “A Christmas Carol” movies, and “A Christmas Story.” The kid in me always tunes in to “The Little Drummer Boy,” “Santa Claus is Coming to Town,” “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” “The Grinch,” “Mr. Magoo’s Christmas Carol,” and “Christmas Without a Santa Claus.”
These shows never fail to make me feel good, and I never tire of watching them. They all have positive messages and are good, clean shows. Although in “A Christmas Story” Ralphie tells us about how his “old man could cuss a blue streak,” the words are never heard on the screen.
That is a far cry from what we hear and see in “Bad Santa,” “Santa Slays” and many other so-called Christmas programs today. It is easy to get caught up in all the flash of Christmas, but we should all slow down and think about what the season really means. Why does this holiday exist? What is the purpose of this holiday?
I searched multiple sites for America’s top ten most popular Christmas traditions/customs for 2022. The items most listed (not necessarily in the following order) on the sites include: (1) Picking out a Christmas tree, (2) Watching a lighting ceremony/seeing all the lights, (3) Decorating the house and/or yard, (4) Playing Secret Santa/exchanging gifts, (5) Building a gingerbread house/baking Christmas cookies, (6) Counting down to Christmas (with or without an Advent Calendar), (7) Mail holiday cards, (8) Writing a letter to Santa/visiting the guy in the red suit, (9) Wearing an ugly sweater, (10) Singing Christmas songs. Most sites did not even mention “going to church or celebrating Jesus’ birth.”
I think this is a sad commentary on our society. I remember when Christ was the main focus or first thing we heard about regarding Christmas.
Do not worry; I am not going to get on my soapbox or give anyone a sermon here. We have many pastors who write excellent columns for our “Coosa County News” (CCN), and I am sure they will have awesome Christmas messages for us all. However, I do ask that you share their messages with your friends and neighbors who may not receive the CCN.
I also ask for you to please remember the fact holidays can be extremely hard on many people. If you are fortunate enough to be healthy and have family and friends, then be grateful for those blessings. If possible, share your good fortune with those who may be less fortunate.
Make it a priority to share joy and happiness with others. Give a smile to everyone you meet. It cost you nothing and often earns you a valuable reward; maybe even a smile that will make your day.
I pray for joy, peace and goodwill for this world. I thank God for His grace and mercy. Until next month, be safe and have a very Merry Christmas. Finally, may God bless you with a fantastic 2023!