Tuesday, December 27, 2005

The Twelve Blogs of Christmas (12)

This series was supposed to wrap up by the 25th but it felt too weird to leave it with only 11. Here's a recap of the lyrics covered and the numbers will link you to the posts in case you've missed any or want to check out a specific topic: (11) Christmas day will always be, just so long as we have we; (10) When blossoms flowered 'mid the snow upon a winter's night 'twas born a child; (9) Yet in thy dark streets shineth the Everlasting Light; (8) So he said "Let's run and we'll have some fun now before I melt away."; (7) We three kings; (6) Oh tidings of Comfort and Joy; (5) The Twelve Pains of Christmas; (4) From Atlantic to Pacific, gee, the traffic is terrific; (3) Do they know it's Christmastime at all?; (2) Sing we joyous all together...Heedless of the wind and weather; and (1) It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.

Part Twelve: Wherever you find Love it feels like Christmas.

This is another more obscure lyric and I apologize to anyone who would rather me blog about Hark the Herald or O Holy Night (both of which were in the running and got bumped last minute for other songs). This one is the title lyric from the song sung by the Ghost of Christmas Present in The Muppet Christmas Carol (told ya it was obscure). I've always loved the story of A Christmas Carol* because to me it's a cool redemption message in a completely non churched package.
*I'll just assume at this point that you all are familiar with the story because Dickens was usually required middle school reading and even more likely I doubt that any of you managed to escape all thirty some film versions of the tale. (Choose from Alistair Sim, Bill Murray, Patrick Stewart, Kelsey Grammar, Michael Caine and the Muppets, and many more!)
The star of the story, Ebeneezer Scrooge, does a complete turn around with his life because, with the help of some ghosts, he comes to realize the true meaning of Christmas. The ghosts explain to him that he needs to go to church, read the Bible and pray more. No, wait... I meant that they tell him he needs a Christmas tree, better gift wrap, and cards to send to his relatives. Nope. Still wrong. Christmas isn't about being more religious. Christmas isn't about being more commercial.

Christmas is about what the ghosts really show Scrooge: love, helping the needy, and living for others. Loving people, serving the forgotten, self-sacrifice - sound familiar? It's Christ's message too. The funny thing about A Christmas Carol is that most film versions don't say much about Scrooge on December 26, 27, 28, etc but everyone knows that his changes weren't temporary. There's something about jumping into a servanthood lifestyle that brings a permanent revolution. A heart dedicated to love will choose no other path. When Scrooge swore that he would keep Christmas always in his heart he was promising to choose a life a love. As the Muppets sang: "Wherever you find love, it feels like Christmas".

For anyone feeling a little let down that the holiday is over, know that it really can last all year. With the love we share, any day can feel like Christmas. Today, tomorrow, forever. I know it's cliche but I can't resist: Merry Christmas to all and God Bless us, everyone.

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