I went down to my basement last week and selected two Christmas CDs for my car. It was hard to make a decision, but I finally decided on Tony Bennett and Count Basie and the Frank Sinatra Christmas Album featuring Gordon Jenkins’ orchestra.
That put me in the Christmas spirit, but there was one thing missing to make the season complete – Elizabeth Blevins’ wonderful homemade candy. Then, right in the middle of my day Friday, here she came with the best candy ever created. It was officially the Christmas season. Liz is a great friend and I can always count on her to bring her candy every year. In addition to being a great part of Shawnee State University, she is a wonderful cook and creates, in addition to the world’s best candy, pies to die for.
Now, I can coast through the rest of the Christmas preliminaries. I mean I can drink some egg nog, sample the boxed candy we put out at Christmas and watch those schmaltzy chick flick Christmas movies. My movie season begins with “It’s a Wonderful Life,” with Jimmy Stewart and Donna Reed. Then I go into the array of “Christmas Letter,” “Christmas Surprise,” and the lineup of Christmas stories about the wealthy son closing down the factory, which would cost jobs, but his being rescued by a beautiful lady who not only marries the son, but keeps the factory open to save the town’s jobs. There are at least three movies with that plot. And yes, I’m a sucker for all of them.
I didn’t know until late in life, what the real important aspects of Christmas are. Giving to help those less fortunate is the top priority. Then, it’s watching those you love open their presents and actually being surprised, and reading Luke’s account of the birth of Jesus Christ. I am still amazed that the creator of the universe came in the form of a baby, and then a man, to save the world from sin. I will never tire of that story.
On Christmas Eve, our son Michael will come home from Columbus, and we will eat an extravagant meal prepared by Joyce. She always over-prepares and causes me to have to continue to eat the leftovers for days. It’s tough work, but someone has to do it.
There’s sports on TV, opening gifts and giving gifts to our pets. The dogs don’t care for toys, but they love big juicy bones. My cats like toy mice for about the first 15 minutes, then they just want to be left alone. It’s the same routine every year and one I thoroughly enjoy. Yes, I am an old traditionalist, and don’t care if I am surprised by anything. I just want to feel the love in the air and know it is the season and great cheer.
I am most thankful for Jesus and his gifts he gives to me year round, and I will always treasure the truth of what the season is really all about. Numbers 24:17 – “I shall see him, but not now: I shall behold him, but not nigh: there shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel, and shall smite the corners of Moab, and destroy all the children of Sheth.”
Merry Christmas from the Lewis household to yours.
Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.