The title of this blog post is one that all Americans who celebrate Christmas are probably familiar with. It’s that cheesy line repeated over and over in Christmas movies that none of us really understand. What is the Christmas spirit? Where does it show up? Most of all, how can you and I obtain it and experience it?
Today I experienced the Christmas spirit firsthand through my sister and her friend. My sister, 2 of my brothers, and I were all in a Christmas play during the past couple weeks. The theatre was running a contest for selling tickets: whoever sold the most tickets by the last performance would win a scholarship to the drama camp of their choice (at that theatre) and a beautiful, brand-new mountain bike. I can only imagine how many of those kids had their eye on that prize.
We made it through 6 performances in 2 weeks and received rave reviews. The play was an amazing success thanks to our great cast and crew. When we got to the end of today’s performance it was time to reveal the winner of the contest. I looked forward to seeing the joy on the face of the child who won that bike. It truly was a beauty.
Before I reveal the ending to this little story, let me preface by saying this has been a very difficult year for my family. Money has been so tight that we often wonder how we’re going to eat and pay our bills, so obviously luxuries have all but disappeared from our lives at the moment.
I wasn’t surprised when no one from my family won the prize. I knew we hadn’t done as much as other families in the cast to sell tickets and I was hoping someone really deserving would win it. A little girl named Kaylin was called forward and everyone applauded heartily for her.
Then I heard a voice call out, “I want to give the bike to Ariel,” and watched tearfully as she rolled the bike over to my sister. Apparently Ariel had mentioned in passing to her friends that her bike was broken and she couldn’t use it anymore, and Kaylin worked hard to earn that bike just so she could give it to Ariel. Both of them were so happy and, in spite of the slight twinge of jealousy I’m sure a lot of the kids might have felt, I think everyone else was happy too.
If this isn’t the “Christmas spirit,” I’m not really sure what is. If more people had this kind of love for their friends and neighbors I can only imagine how wonderful this world would be. The spirit of giving of yourself for someone who doesn’t have much goes all the way back to a manger in Bethlehem and continues into this present day inside a little girl who did whatever it took just to give something nice to a friend. I pray that the “Christmas spirit” will continue to thrive in human hearts for many ages to come.
EDIT TO ADD: This is the website for the theatre that held the play and the contest. All of my local friends, please support this place! It is awesome!