And just like that…it’s Christmas time.
Up goes the tree, out come the decorations; we start planning and shopping and wrapping and watching all the movies we can’t bring ourselves to watch any other time of the year.
We have lots of favourites.
The Santa Clause,
A Christmas Carol.
But without a doubt, one flick gets us reaching for the tissues as it thoroughly soaks us in the Christmas Spirit.
You guessed it – ‘It’s a wonderful life.’
George Baily, played by the late great James Stewart has spent his life helping others, yet on Christmas Eve, he is overcome by stress and disappointment and wishes he had never been born. Intending to end his life, he is met on a bridge by his guardian angel, Clarance, who shows him what the community of Bedford Falls would be like without his contribution.
After this eye-opening experience, George sees the importance of his seemingly small life and we are left with a revelation, seeing deeply the preciousness of life.
It is impossible to watch this Christmas classic and not be unspeakably grateful for all the ‘small things’ we often take for granted. Yes, one might have a sudden urge to hug and kiss everyone who has ever walked across their path.
And isn’t that what Christmas is all about?
It’s a time to stop and see again; to shred the stress and look grace straight in the eye.
It’s a time to note the contribution of others and celebrate every good deed.
It’s a time to enjoy the humble and the plenty; to observe what often is unnoticed and acknowledge what often is unsaid.
And though there still is imperfection, memories of loss, unresolve and sadness, we rest into Christmas because like George Baily we see all the things we could have missed if we had not received the gift of here.
And this is why we let joy in, why we set our table and raise our cups, why we say thanks.
This is why we gather and sing and give and feast.
We get it, we sit by the light of gratitude, we see life for the priceless gift it is.
Don’t be mistaken, we do not make light of dire circumstances, we know the pit of disappointment, the nights on the bridge or in bed wishing never to wake up. We know the pang of hopelessness, feeling like grief will eat you alive; we know how life can make us numb and no amount of tinsel or Christmas pudding can change that.
But that’s the magic of gratitude, even though we cry, we can perceive something beautiful and eventually find hope again.
And so, we say from all at Sister & Soul, hope be yours lovely one.
May you be aware of all that you have been given and overwhelmed with Christmas love this year.