Holiday Traditions

It’s the most Wonderful time of the year….

There’ll be parties for hosting…

Marshmallows for toasting and

Caroling out in the snow *

As the song says, It’s the most Wonderful time of the year…. although some of the traditions listed might not be among those you and your family participate in I am sure you have some. Some families hand-make raviolis, some make boxes of cookies,  others send letters with a summation of the years events. Whatever the case may be for you and yours I am certain that you have warm memories of the traditions that this time of year always brings.

For me, It’s a Wonderful Life** is always a part of the Christmas season. I can have it playing in the background as we trim the tree or make out cards to send. I suspect I can recite it verbatim by now and have my favorite parts as well as the scenes I would like to past over.

As many of you may know it’s a story of how a man gets a chance to see how the world would be if he never existed. It’s a real eye-opener to see how much one man can impact the lives of so many people even if he doesn’t know it. Keeping in mind that it is a fictional account of how things might be I feel it drives home several valuable points.

Point One – Every single person is important and special. Regardless of how we look or what we do or where we live or what we have or do not have – we are each very unique and play a role on this stage of life that no one else could.

I will praise You
because I have been remarkably and wonderfully madePs 139:14

Point Two – Money isn’t the most important thing in the world. George Bailey jumps off of a bridge because he is faced with scandal, bankruptcy and jail over the lose of a large sum of money. In the end we see that he is the wealthiest guy in town because he has friends who love him and come to his defense.

For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, and by craving it, some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pains.- 1Tim 6:10

Final Point – Be content with what you have. God loves you and will not leave you or forsake you. As the saying goes – “grow where you’re planted”. I am not saying that we shouldn’t be ambitious and work hard to better ourselves but not at the cost of being discontented with our current life.

Your life should be free from the love of money. Be satisfied with what you have, for He Himself has said, I will never leave you or forsake you. – Heb 13:5

We watch George Bailey grow from a happy, self-assured young man with lofty goals of seeing the world become a sullen broken-spirited and angry man who feels trapped in his dead-end job and middle class lifestyle. He sees those around him move on to successful careers. The straw that breaks the camels back is the lose of a large sum of money by his business partner Uncle Billy. Believing he is worth more dead than alive George jumps off of a nearby bridge. After the dreamlike sight of a world without him George is returned to his life with a new outlook and appreciation of what he has. I always look around me and appreciate what I have when I watch this movie because – truly It Is A Wonderful Life !

This Christmas Season I hope that all of us carry the love of God to those around us as we enjoy what we have and celebrate the Greatest Gift of all – Jesus !

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*”It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year” is a popular Christmas song written in 1963 by Edward Pola and George Wyle. It was recorded and released that year by pop singer Andy Williams for his first Christmas album, The Andy Williams Christmas Album
**It’s a Wonderful Life is a 1946 American Christmas fantasy comedy-drama film produced and directed by Frank Capra, based on the short story “The Greatest Gift”, which Philip Van Doren Stern wrote in 1939 and published privately in 1945

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