The writer Henry Van Dyke inquires if we are willing to “keep” Christmas, and he asks us:
Are you willing to forget what you have done for other people and to remember what other people have done for you; to ignore what the world owes you and to think what you owe the world; to see that the people around you are as real as you are and try to look into their hearts that are hungry for joy; to realize that probably the only good reason for your existence is not what you are going to get out of life, but what you are going to give to life; to close your book of complaints and look around for a place where you can sow a few seeds of happiness---are you willing to do these things even for a day? Then you can keep Christmas.
Are you willing to stoop down and consider the needs and the desires of little children; to remember the weakness and loneliness of people who are growing old; to stop asking how much your friends love you and ask yourself whether you love them enough; to bear in mind the things that other people have to bear on their hearts; to try to understand what those who live in the same house with you really want---are you willing to do these things for even a day? Then you can keep Christmas.
Are you willing to believe that love is the strongest thing in the world--stronger than hate, stronger than war, stronger than death—and that the blessed life which began in Bethlehem so many many years ago is the image of brightness and Eternal Love? Then you can keep Christmas.
And if you keep it for a day, why not always? But you can never keep it alone.
May Black Mountain United Church of Christ be a place where we keep Christmas.
God Bless Us Everyone!!!