The many blessings of Christmas

Even in these tough economic times we are all blessed. Many of us clip coupons from newspapers, some search the internet for the best discounts and most of us watch what we spend because with those savings we can reach out to those in our community who are less fortunate than we are.

Here in America we are truly blessed and our Creator looks to us to share those blessings. When we give to things like Operation Empty Stocking that has been done for almost thirty years here in Manchester you know that your time and dollars are being well spent. By reading our other papers Empty Stocking Programs are being done in other communities also.

We have all heard the Christmas story many times throughout our lives. Winter had invaded Jerusalem. Mary and Joseph were tired and it had begun to rain. Since the inn was full they were offered room in the stable. Have you ever wondered how the animals who shared the stable with them felt about having humans in “their abode?” Let Harry the horse and Catherine the cow tell you.

Wonder what the sheep out on the hillside thought when the night sky turned bright and the host of Angels started to herald the birth of the new child? Two rapping sheep with long curly hair named “Wooly and Booly” might share their feelings with us.

The animals in the stable in Jerusalem seldom saw camels. How do you think they felt when they suddenly saw three long legged animals with humps on their back striding up to the stable with men dressed in long robes? Yes, we know the Wise Men came to honor the King.

Christmas is my favorite time of the year. The tree, the lights, the wonder, the joy, the warmth and everything that makes Christmas. There is something about the season from Turkey Day through Christmas that is the most wonderful time of the year. Maybe it is the anticipation of spending more time with our families and watching our love ones as they open their gifts.

It is really about the joy that we have in our hearts and “Yes, Virginia there is a Santa Claus” joy. It’s the joy that we have from Thanksgiving to the giving to others at Christmas.

Somewhere in our adult lives we were told to put away our hope and good cheer after the holidays were over.

Beginning in the New Year we will face a year of electing a President of this nation and many other elections on the state and local level. It will be a year of politics with gruesome headlines. As each day passes we will not be able to re-live that day, we will never get it back. Therefore, we should live each day to its fullest never forgetting the blessings that God has given us all the yearlong and not only at Christmas time.

Santa will come and go but it is the small gifts we get all the time, the simple joys that are Christmas all year long. Think about it; our comfortable slippers, our favorite songs, a hot cup of coffee each morning, our friends and neighbors, laughter, a ham biscuit and the blessing of waking up every morning.

Whatever it is that comforts us, moves us, bring us joy, we need to find it and savor it. Let’s all be Santa Claus to someone the other 364 days a year and not just on Christmas Day. Let’s pass a fat sack of joy on to others even if they don’t deserve it.

This Christmas Season after the tree comes down and the exchange of gifts are done may we continue to keep joy in our hearts and pass that joy along to others. We have been blessed beyond measure so let’s thank God every day for the birth of His son Jesus on Christmas Day.