Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Keeping Good Cheer Throughout the Year

There’s a magic to Christmas. It’s a season of giving. We gladly turn our hearts to the memory of our Lord’s birth, His life, and His sacrifices for us; and we gladly turn our hearts to our families and to our fellowmen. From Thanksgiving to New Year, we feel the presence of angels as we allow ourselves to be lifted up, to be a little better than we’ve remembered to be, to think a little more kindly, and to give of ourselves a little more freely.

For children, the magic may be found in anticipation, and in the quiet realization of the security of their parents’ love for them. They feel the excitement of traditions, the colors, the foods, and the presents. For adults, it can be found in the planning and preparations, in the searching and giving of gifts, and in the delight seen in and through the eyes of their children.

For the single, the lonely, the aged, it may be found returning home, in a shared meal, in a friendship renewed, and in forgiveness extended or received.

So many miracles happen at Christmas, and truly all year long; but, at Christmas, it may be that our senses are more keenly aware. It might be the music; it might be the Christmas story; it might be the shared traditions and the extended fellowship, service, and charity…of course, it’s all of these things. But maybe, it’s just even a little bit more.

Yes, it’s so much more. I believe, at Christmas, one of the greatest gifts is that we again feel our brotherhood. It’s renewed, just like it is every time we come together in tradition or tragedy. And during this time of connection, of renewal, hope in our own humanity is restored. Truly the Prince of Peace delivers peace to us, especially when we so willingly offer it to each other.

Maybe that’s why we are so keen on goal-setting for the New Year. Maybe it’s because we’ve felt the magic of Christmas and don’t want to lose it.

What is magical about Christmas for you? How do you feel it, and how does it make you feel? What makes you happy about Christmas, and what makes you sense happiness in others? Truly Christmas is a time of good cheer. Now what can we all do, what can you do individually to carry that good cheer with you throughout the New Year? What will you do to keep Christ’s Spirit with you?  

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