Christmas is all about hope

We’re winding down a stressful year and Gar would know; he’s had 12 months in a long accumulation of months, with you know who.

Christmas is first and foremost when we celebrate our Savior’s birth, but there’s something else. It’s a time we put aside our selfish desires. When Aunt Marge offers you a slice of the dreaded fruit cake, you take that awful clump of pretend dessert with rubber hunks of sugar masquerading as fruit, and you put it in your piehole and swallow it down, and you tell her it’s magically delicious. It’s once a year and she’s old and you can do anything for one night.

It’s not being deceiving. It’s being better than yourself. It’s watching someone’s face brighten in delight and your heart growing two sizes because you had it in your power to make someone feel a little better and you walked the second mile to do it and it bettered both your lives. That’s what Christmas is all about. That’s what life is all about. That “just be honest” is way overrated. Honesty is only the best policy if it’s not crushing the joy from others. The truth always works unless it

only benefits you.
Christmastime is to be a rejoicing time

and nothing brings more hope than when the downhearted make good. The best way to show what you’re made of is to keep putting one foot in front of the other. That’s what we do. That’s what we’re made to do. We come from strong stock. Dale Carnegie said it best, “Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all.”

Doctor Seuss wasn’t well received when he began writing and was turned down by 27 publishers for his first book. Ready to give up, he became morose and considered burning the manuscript. Thankfully he didn’t because it was finally published in 1937 after a chance meeting on the street with a friend who had just became a publisher.

This was the start of more than 60 books, which sold over 650 million copies. As for films, there were 11 made from his books; the most famous being The Grinch. I couldn’t find the profit made from the 1966 version of The Grinch, but

he second, done in 2000, banked $345 million. The 2018 version hauled in $61 million just on opening weekend. Never give up on what’s important to you. You have something to offer that nobody else can give.

In 1892, the premier of Peter Tchaikovsky’s ballet, “The Nutcracker,” wasn’t well-received and got negative reception from critics who claimed, “It’s too boring, it has a wretched set design, it shouldn’t involve children, and it will be the death of ballet.”

It remained neglected until the New York Ballet’s version of “The Nutcracker” in 1954, and thus became not only a classic, but a Christmas tradition starting in 1960. At present the New York Ballet makes around $11 million from this one production at Christmas each year. It is performed all over the world during the holiday season, with the same results, which kick-starts many ballet companies financially for the coming year.

It takes a strong countenance to withstand the onslaught of negative influences but critics will never pay your bills so don’t let them dictate the worth

of your dreams. It doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks. If there is something on your heart, then it’s important, and absolutely worthy of your efforts.

If you’re a praying person, could you pray for Gar this year?

He’d surely be grateful. I asked him what he was doing recently and he said he was writing a Christmas list. I tried to read it but he shaded the note from view so I read his thoughts...

“Dear Santa or Jesus, whoever intercepts this first,

“Could you bring Trena a heart? I don’t mean another one, like she has something wrong with hers. See, I think there was a manufacturing glitch or defect, because I’m pretty sure she didn’t come with one. If you both get this message, all the better, she could sure use two, maybe three if you have extras. And it might be in my best interest if we could keep this little message just between us. Thank you in advance... Gar”

Merry Christmas and may you and Gar be joyously weighed down with all God’s blessings in the new year and beyond.