The holidays brings tidings of good joy and on occasion, bad attitudes, rudeness, and violence. It seems everyone is not blessed with the gift of gab during the holiday season. Oft times, I feel compelled to respond to the silence with my grandfather’s quote. “Speak ole butt, your face won’t!” Alas, the world has grown more sensitive. Everywhere I look, depression lurks around the corner.
When did we become this overly sensitive, thin skinned, shamble of humanity? Sure, words have the power to inflict harm. However, we control how we react to it. These musings came after I encountered a lady in town who refused to acknowledge my presence after offering to let her go ahead of me at the cash register. Instantly, her nose went into the air. It reminded me of a lesson from my childhood. On a Wednesday afternoon, sometime during the summer, at some point in the 1980’s, my grandfather gave me some much-needed advice. A kid poorer than we were had spoken to me, and I snubbed him. My granddad took me to the side, and he whispered these words to me: “It doesn’t cost you anything to speak or to be nice!”
My sin was a lack of common courtesy. My family was as poor as the kid I had snubbed, but I wanted to feel superior. To this day, I am thankful for the lesson my pawpaw taught me. When the infrastructure crashes through, when technology fails, when the government doesn’t have the answers, all we have is each other and the Lord. The holiday season should bring out our best behavior, not the worst. If there was ever a time when we should show forth compassion, joy and goodwill to mankind, now is the time.
We celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ during Christmas. If we are following His example, it should inspire others to be kind to one another. After all, any journey is shorter with friends. May your holiday season be filled with joy for you all.