Christmas Present

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Have you read the news lately?

I’m sorry.

Maybe it’s just me, but it feels like every headline is a proclamation of doom anymore.

I remember being a kid. I still am a kid in many ways, but I remember being a kid and knowing there were bad people in the world, but I figured they were far away in other lands, being evil amongst themselves like orcs in Mordor. But as I got older, I learned that the bad people were everywhere–that I, too, am capable of villainy. Black and white wasn’t so black and white anymore. The world shrank, and I learned I was next-door neighbors with people who wanted to kill me because I believed differently than them.

But for the longest time, I believed that all bad news stopped on Christmas Day. That there was something magical about the day itself that made adults stop being adults and remember what it was like to be a child for just one day. That all violence ceased, that no one robbed anyone, that no one murdered anyone, all wars came to a ceasefire, and no one passed away. How could there be bad news on Christmas Day?

Part of me still thinks, every time I read the headlines, that maybe, just maybe, if we can make it to Christmas, all of this will stop.

But the most I can do to keep that illusion is to not read the news on Christmas Day. Nothing is sacred to wicked people.

We can’t worry too much about tomorrow.  After all, what happens tomorrow is ultimately out of our control. It’s a blank page yet to be written on, as far as we can see.

But we have today. I have today. I can to the best I can to be as loving as possible today. I may not be able to change the world and make it a better place all on my own, but I can make one person’s day better. Over time, I might be able to make one person’s life better. I might be able to grant a Christmas wish or two, before my time is up.

And that’s enough. I couldn’t ask for more.

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