Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A Time to Reflect

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Christmas is almost here. It is a time for friends and family to connect with each other. Some just connected with each other last month, and others will connect for the first time in years. This time of year seems to bring people back together for the holidays—Thanksgiving, Christmas, Kwanzaa, and Hanukah. Whether you believe in the religious symbolism of Christmas or not, the story of Christmas is a story of people travelling from afar to connect with other people.

While this time of year seems to be a good time for people to connect, people we’ve missed connections with are the most missed. It is that time of year when we notice that place at the table where Dad once said family grace, or the spot on the couch where our favorite Aunt or Uncle always watched the big game from or fell asleep on. This time of year fills voids for many, yet it makes many others lonely. Whether this time of year brings glad tidings and joy or the memories of holidays past, this time of year is a time for reflection.

In the story A Christmas Carol, Scrooge is given three choices as to how he is going to look at Christmas time and his life. He is visited by four ghosts (the first being the ghost of a business partner who died several years ago and warns Scrooge that if he doesn’t listen to the coming ghosts he could be doomed to roam the earth aimlessly).

When the ghost of Christmas past takes Scrooge back to his childhood, we see what made Scrooge the type of person he is. His mother died, his father blamed him for his mother’s death and dumped him off at a boarding school, and person after person abandons him.

After the Ghost of Christmas past reveals those hidden parts of Scrooge’s life that turned him into a miser, the ghost of Christmas present shows Scrooge the happiness and joy of his assistant Bob Cratchit’s family. And they experience that joy despite their son’s (Tiny Tim) disability.

By the time the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come reveals the mourning of the Cratchit family after Tiny Tim’s death to Scrooge, he is ready to change his ways. He has seen what will happen to him if he keeps moving forward by looking back. He sees that he will die alone, and those he once stole from will steal from the estate he leaves to no one.

So no matter what this time of year brings for you, be that type of person you want to attract. If you want to attract goodness in your life, be a good person. If you want to attract kindness, be kind. If you want to attract smiles, smile. A former employer of mine once said, “Just because you’re having a bad day that doesn’t give you the right to make other people have a bad day.” Life has taken it’s toll on all of us, at one time or another, but we each only have one life to live. Smile and live yours the best you can.

Happy Holidays,





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