Years ago, our church group was out Christmas caroling. We weren’t far from the church and our leader led us out to the back of Mr. Castle’s house to sing to him and his wife. His wife came to the door and greeted us with a smile and was gracious. We sang to her when suddenly through the window we saw her husband appear in the family room with a big towel around his body. He obviously had just gotten out of the shower. He came into his family room unknowing that 20 carolers had all eyes on him. Several of the women began to chuckle. I just knew we were all about to see something we had not planned on. Sitting down on his sofa he put his feet up and was preparing to relax. The volume of laughter from a couple of his adult friends grew louder when Mr. Castle looked up and saw us. He immediately made an “Oh no” expression while shaking his head a bit and jumped up and departed to another part of the house. We sang to his sweet wife and moved on down the street with a new visual that I still remember to this day. I’ll always remember what a good spirit he and his wife had and that we all left feeling uplifted by them.
This week I walked to the back of a local nursing home to look through a window to see a friend. Ms. Southard is 99. My wife and I visited in her home recently. She was agile, mentally sharp and dancing around like she always does. Her attitude always lifts us up. She did say on that very day we were there, “I don’t want to end up in a nursing home.I told my son I don’t ever want to be in one.” Two weeks later while closing her curtains she made an awkward step, fell and broke her leg. Surgery was required and also rehabilitation. Her insurance plan would not pay for her to go to the local rehabilitation hospital but instead put her where she never wanted to be – a nursing home.
I found out from a nurse which room she was in and how to find the right window to look through. The nurse said she would meet me at the window and let Ms. Southard know I was there. I dreaded what I might see but wanted to wish her a Merry Christmas. Knocking on the window I was delighted that she was sitting up and started laughing and waving at me. We exchanged Merry Christmas the best we could yelling through a window. While I almost wanted to cry seeing her there, I was so encouraged by her good spirit.
The spirit of Christmas is inside you. This spirit is greater than you and I and pulls us through the awkward and the very difficult times of life.
The Christmas season we celebrate is one of hope and celebration. The story of Jesus is the story of God’s hope coming to us in the little baby a long time ago. 2020 has certainly been a year we’ve needed hope.
2021 is going to be a better year. Vaccines for Covid-19 are coming. May your spirit be rekindled. Share your spirit with others and may the year ahead be one of the best ever for us all.
Dr. Glenn Mollette is the author of 12 books including Uncommon Sense. His column is published weekly in over 600 publications in all 50 states.