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Saturday, December 13, 2014


In a world that treats God or Jesus with all the relevancy

of the Tooth Fairy or The Big Pumpkin,

I am hardly the yardstick of the universe. Still, I have some reflections ...
1.) We want to believe.

Like Fox Mulder, we want to believe ...

that SomeOne is, not just watching from Up Above,

but that He is invisibly walking beside us, having once walked in the flesh beside a ragtag group of common men.

We want to believe Magic and Miracles are still possible.

Ask any mother holding her first-born in her arms for the first time, marveling that this tiny, cooing life had come from within her,

if Magic and Miracles are possible.

You know what answer you will get.

Most sneer about the possibility of Miracles in our modern age.

But Christmas gives us permission to be children
and believe for a season again.
Which leads me to speculate ...


CHRISTMAS allows us to redeem our childhood innocence for an all too-short season.

As VR Barkowski once wrote in a comment:
The best stories have redemption at their heart.
And the tales of Christmas passed down through the centuries is a great story.

And why not?
It affords us a chance to look at each moment of life with a child-like sense of wonder, awe, and surprise.

Children haven't yet grown jaded. They meet no ordinary people in their lives.

All is new and fresh.
And seeing their wonder at such things as elaborate Christmas lights, festive ornamented pine trees, and carols sung to neighbors for the first time --

we live our childhood and theirs at the same time.  It is like living twice!
We look out the window and just for a moment under the moonlight, we are a child again,
and we see Sugar Plum Faeries skating across the frozen bird bath.

3.) GIFTS.
Business men the world over want to keep Christmas,

even though some of them replace Christ with an X
to save precious space on store front windows and not to offend other religions.

But I am talking about us giving gifts. Some have made it a burden by trying to play Santa to too many people.

Still Christmas is not type specific like birthdays, anniversaries, Mother's and Father's Days.
The whole world gets in on the act.

We can give to anyone -- and anyone can give to us.

C. S. Lewis said, “Nothing you have not given away will ever really be yours.”
Like love.

Which leads to the greatest gift of all:


"What you see and what you hear depends a great deal on where you are standing.
It also depends on what sort of person you are.”
- Samuel McCord

And at Christmas time, most of us try to become a little better than we have been.

As World War I's Christmas Truce proved:

Christmas truce was a series of widespread unofficial ceasefires that took place along the Western Front around Christmas of 1914, during the First World War.

Through the week leading up to Christmas, parties of German and British soldiers began to exchange seasonal greetings and songs between their trenches;

on occasion, the tension was reduced to the point

that individuals would walk across to talk to their opposite numbers bearing gifts.
On Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, many soldiers from both sides –

as well as, to a lesser degree, from French units – independently ventured into "No man's land",

where they mingled, exchanging food and souvenirs.

As well as joint burial ceremonies, several meetings ended in carol-singing.

Troops from both sides had also been so friendly as to play games of football with one another.

Though there was no official truce,

about 100,000 British and German troops were involved in unofficial cessations of fighting along the length of the Western Front.

The first truce started on Christmas Eve, 24 December 1914,

when German troops began decorating the area around their trenches in the region of Ypres, Belgium.

The Germans began by placing candles on their trenches and on Christmas trees, then continued the celebration by singing Christmas carols.

The British responded by singing carols of their own.

The two sides continued by shouting Christmas greetings to each other.

Soon thereafter, there were excursions across No Man's Land,

where small gifts were exchanged, such as food, tobacco and alcohol, and souvenirs such as buttons and hats.

The artillery in the region fell silent that night.

The truce also allowed a breathing spell

where recently fallen soldiers could be brought back behind their lines by burial parties. Joint services were held.

The truce is seen as a symbolic moment of Peace and Humanity
amidst one of the most violent
events of modern history.
Farmers give a section of land rest to go fallow and revitalize.
Sleep puts healing brackets between even the harshest of days.
Somehow the wound of a terrible day is blunted by a night's sleep.

So The Father gave this yearly holiday to heal and become the loving, kinder soul we could be year round.

Let the cynics say what they will.
A man can no more diminish the truth by saying it does not exist
than a lunatic can put out the sun
by scribbling the word 'darkness'
on the walls of his cell.




  1. To you, too. All the joys of the season, all year round.

  2. The WWI truce is a great story -- how they played soccer and stopped killing each other for a day. Sometimes we need the faith of a child.

  3. That was a great story.
    Merry Christmas, Roland!
    And since we are all God's children, what better day to act like it than on Christmas.

  4. Nilanjana:
    And to you all the wonders of love and magic all year round!

    Yes, we need to see the world through the eyes of an innocent child again, right?

    WWI was such a horrible waste of lives and hearts. The story of its Christmas Truce renews our faith that common men can ignore the hatreds of governments for a least a small season.

    Merry Christmas to you, too!

    Being God's children we can at least to try living as brothers for this season!

  5. It's the commercialism that spoils Christmas and the attitude to over-achieve the 'best' decorations, the finest gift, and the biggest party. I'm tired of the marketing focus put on this holiday.

    We may all view Christmas differently, but I would like to see simplicity. It is viewed differently in different countries, but to me Christmas is for the children and to count our blessings. It's a time to help others when we can. Hope your Christmas is a lovely one, Roland, and that your blessings multiply. You remind us to reflect.

  6. D.G.:
    Thank you for such nice words.

    You are right: Bob Hope in his quote a few posts ago said the same: the simple joys of Christmas are what bring us the most happiness when we reach back into our memories.

    To be childlike in innocence and love and acceptance is the key to retaining the Christmas spirit. :-)

  7. I've always loved those stories about the unofficial peace truce in the war. And I like to remember that it was the novelist (like us) Charles Dickens who made Christmas into a bigger holiday by emphasizing what we should do for each other in his Christmas Carol