Decorating done – ✔️.
Christmas letter written – ✔️
Cards ready to be addressed – ✔️
Dogs sleeping in front of gas logs – ✔️
Cough pretty much gone – ✔️
Snow – snow – snow – still on the ground but definitely on its way out – ✔️
Christmas Spirit ❓❓❓
My Christmas spirit has not been where it usually is around this time of year. Maybe it is the cold I have been battling. Maybe it is all the bickering going on in the world. Maybe it is – – just me.
Anyway, after 3 days of just enjoying the snow, watching birds and playing with my “snowbears” (otherwise known as silly labradors), I decided to venture back into the world. There were lines of people in every store, lines of traffic, lines of snow banks, lines of Christmas songs singing through the noise, lines of cars waiting for one parking space, so it was not my favorite kind of day to be out-an-about. But then again, these are the days when My Father likes to yank my chain a bit as well.
Just have to get my pesky, negative, whiney attitude out of the way and breathe deeply in my soul and stand back up.
Two stores down, and I was at my last stop. By that point, I was not in the mood to even be there. I had already gotten my exercise in the other parking lots, so when I had to park a “fer” distance from this last store, I was beginning to have one of those whiney conversations with GOD that I tend to have when I am in my “poor-pitiful-me” frame of mind.
Got out of the car to walk toward the store when a familiar song refrain surrounded me. It was Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”. The words sang deep in my spirit, and there it was. A twinkle of Christmas light shining in my eyes.
When I looked up, I realized it wasn’t a choir of angels singing the words, but a solitary, outdoor musician. 40 degrees. His black hooded sweatshirt pulled tight around his head as he played his amplified violin. His face full of concentration as his fingers moved over the strings. How he could play when the sun was hidden and snow piled around his feet was beyond me.
His music followed me into the store, but I had lost interest in buying anything or standing in line. So – I walked back outside and stood there. Some children were also listening and talking softly with their mother. As she handed each of them a dollar, they smiled as they put a dollar in the violin case. Needless to say, I added a some as well.
That pesky “attitude” that had been stealing my Christmas joy all day took a quick nosedive after that. In the car, I turned off the podcasts/newscasts/whatever and turned on the Christmas station. All the way home, I listened to Nat King Cole, Doris Day, Michael Buble, etc. sing with joy and perfection, but none of them could match glorious imperfection of the Christmas violinist.
Joys of the season are sometimes hard to find amid the hustle and bustle of expectations and busyness. So tonight, I am thankful.Thankful for a man who stood on a busy sidewalk and shared his gift of hope and joy with the world. Today I gave him some money, but tonight, I am putting a prayer in his violin case. A Christmas prayer that all his dreams come true and that he continues to bless the world with his gift.
“Lift up your heads, O ye gates; and be ye lift up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of Glory shall come in. 8. Who is the King of Glory? The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle.” – Handel’s Messiah:”Lift Up Your Heads”