Christmas Day has come and gone; the tree that once boasted piles of gifts underneath is now lonely and bare just as it was at the beginning of it's seasonal tour. Some things are having trouble reverting back to their normal states, tho, like Madame Waistline. Will I ever see her again?! Some things would be better off staying in 2011. Ha! But as the end of 2011 draws near [very near!] there is something we do need to carry with us into the new year: the season of Christmas in our hearts.
One night last week Jeff and I went on a late night Kroger run for some last minute shopping. If I recall correctly, I had already been on four other 'little' shopping trips that day! [Before work, at lunch during work, & after work!!!] Needless to say I was worn out and ready to get home.
As we entered the grocery a worn-looking lady was being escorted out by the police/LP. With her hands cuffed behind her back, she pleaded with the officer and repeatedly screamed, 'I already had those in my purse. I got them from my house.'
How fortunate am I? How fortunate are you? That on December 23 you & I can run in the grocery store and pay for the last 4 items needed for the perfect Christmas dinner? That I am going to have the perfect Christmas dinner. I only saw the woman for a split second and as I didn't get the chance for a sit-down interview with her I have no idea if she has house or home, bed or blanket, nor food or water. Regardless, she had a reason for taking a risk and whatever the reason was, it was big enough to warrant the risk of getting arrested.
It is very easy to remember the needs of others' during the month of December. From radio stations broadcasting giving trees and Toys for Tots Christmas Angels to grocery store donation brown-bags and Salvation Army red buckets, society is constantly in our face to give to someone in need during this time of year. But what about the other 11 months of the year? Last I checked, I need more than one brown paper bag worth of groceries to last me an entire year.
Don't leave Christmas in December! I challenge you to take the spirit of Christmas with you as you enter into the new year, reminding people that while Jesus is the Reason for the Season, He is also The Reason for the Joy in Our Hearts Year-Round!