One of my favorites passages is found in the discussion that takes place between Ebenezer Scrooge and his former partner, Jacob Marley. Marley had been dead for seven years at the beginning of the book but returned to warn Scrooge of the dangers of a life that turns its back on others.
“It is required of every man,” the Ghost returned, “that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide; and if that spirit goes not forth in life, it is condemned to do so after death.”
I don’t believe in the idea of condemned spirits roaming the earth after death – but I do think that people who don’t connect with others roam the earth missing out on the joy of fellowship and compassion.
The deeper meaning of Christmas is illustrated in “The Christmas Carol”.
“At this time of the rolling year,” the spectre said, “I suffer most. Why did I walk through the crowds of fellow-beings with my eyes turned down, and never aide them to that blessed Star which led the Wise Men to a poor abode? Were there no poor homes to which its light would have conducted me!”
Start a new tradition this year and read “The Christmas Carol.” It doesn’t take that long and it will be well worth it. It’s also a great book to share with your family! Better yet, read the book and find special ways to care for those in need this season. Reflect the love of God to everyone you encounter. Follow the Star to places where you can make a difference and maybe you’ll find a greater joy during the season!