“The Christmas lights that in his hand He lifts to show us where we stand The Earth beneath our feet a gleam Of childhood’s fairy world of dream, and all of us—the bowed, the gray—turned back to dreams of yesterday.”
The Christmas Lights
The Evening Sun (Baltimore, MD) Dec 24, 1910
Christmas time – It’s viewed differently by many. Some see it as the birthday of the Christian savior Jesus Christ, while others might see it as a Pagan holiday with traditions taken from the Romans, Norse, Celtics and others. Then there are those who see it now as nothing more than a commercialized money trap. A time of year where patience grows shorter and credit card statements grow longer.
However, no matter how it’s seen, there is something undeniable about this time of year–warmth and comfort.
You see, Christmas time has those special feelings of warmth and comfort that no other time of the year can boast.
Those beautiful, sparkling, colorful lights wrapped around the Christmas trees one sees in the homes of family and friends. The yards of strangers who spent hours hanging lights and decorations to show their Christmas spirit and maybe, just maybe, in the spirit of competition, outdo their neighbors. All of this helps to spread a warmth and comfort that, regardless of how low the mercury may dip, you can feel in your soul.
They reflect in the eyes of those who gaze upon them. And if you’re lucky enough to have it, color and enhance the freshly fallen snow with their greens, blues and reds. There are those who, possessed by the spirit of Christmas and feeling an overwhelming need to testify to its magic, open up their yards, inviting everyone to tour their detailed displays.
From miles around, they come. The young and young at heart, with wide-eyed wonder, take in the lights and decorations while sipping candy cane flavored hot chocolate.
Maybe you take comfort in the season’s music, those Christmas carols. Perhaps you favor the newer rocking songs or you’re a traditionalist and prefer the good ole fashioned classics. Maybe it’s the movies that help to call forward the spirit of the season, Hallmark, Lifetime, AMC or the standbys like Charlie Brown, Rudolph and Frosty. Man, so many to choose from. You’ll cook up some popcorn and sit back with the family to enjoy a little TV time after a long day of shopping.
There’s always warmth and comfort in memories of Christmases past. You think back on what seems like the golden age of Christmas with your mom and dad. The halcyon days of your childhood when you first were swept up by that Christmas spirit.
After playing outside for hours in the cold weather, you’d come back to a nicely decorated home that always seemed a little more comfortable than at any other time of the year. The smell of freshly baked cookies and pies helped to enhance the comfort as well as to put a rumble in your belly. To this day, you can still smell those just out of the oven delicious holiday delights.
Some of those family members are gone now, moved on before us. But their memories and spirit keep them just as alive today as they were back then. Those spirits walk with you through holiday traditions, secret family recipes and decorations passed down from generation to generation. They have never really left. They are still right here in our hearts and always will be.
So, whatever it is about this time of year that brings out that joyful spirit in you, whether it’s the lights, the music, the movies, or the memories of the past, those wonderful, loving ancestral ghosts or the look of delight on the faces of the children. Use that, embrace it, show some mercy and help spread some hope. How hard can it be to share that warmth and comfort?
We’ve all been through a lot these past few years and there is nothing needed more now than a bit of that good ole fashioned Christmas spirit. Who knows, maybe that spirit will stay with you long after the holidays have passed. After all, should the Christmas spirit ever really go away?
Here’s to a very merry, warm Christmas and a prosperous, healthy, comfortable New Year, wherever you may be.