No, I'm not a Grinch. We made a commitment to return to the ancient tradition of participating in the Advent fast, in preparation for the Nativity of our Lord. We are therefore saving the actual celebration of Christmas till its traditional place, the twelve days between and including Christmas and the Eve of Theophany (January 5.) The first year we tried it, it was hard to maintain momentum. By December 29th, we were all Christmas-ed out. Little by little we have been delaying our celebration. Today we are more prepared. We've even acquired a collecting of Christmas Cd's, to play Christmas in house all twelve days, since the radio stations will cease with the holiday music come December 26th.
So yesterday when I was in one of our local superstores, I wasn't quite in the Christmas Spirit like those around me. I haven't participated in any random acts of kindness I prefer them to be intentional. I haven't been wearing green or red, bells or tinsel. Actually, I was in a bad mood and I wasn't feeling sociable. So when the man behind me said, "Hello, how are you?" Out of obligation replied, "Fine and you?"
He stopped me in my tracks when he replied, "I'm blessed like you."
I had never heard that before but I loved it. What a great response.
“Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which is translated, “God with us.” (Matthew 1:23)
This man in the checkout line was a miracle to me for which I am grateful.* I'm still going to keep the fast and work harder to read something that will nourish my soul. I will even work harder at being charitable to someone in need. But more importantly, I will live in the reality that I have been blessed... just like you, because God IS with us.
*The world does not revolves around me and this man did not chose the same register as I had so that I could see his patience and gratitude. It just happened that way and I saw it. I am grateful that I saw his example and repented.