This time of year there are so many showings and performances of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. Most people know the story well….the miserly and unhappy Ebeneezer Scrooge; his nephew who never gives up on him; his assistant–the hardworking Bob Cratchit. Cratchit’s family including the sickly but happy Tiny Tim. Ebeneezer is visited by 3 ghosts that teach him the error of his ways. Ebeneezer changes. He begins to love again after ever so many lonely years.
Every year we get the chance to be renewed and change and grow and improve. Through that change we, too grow more open to love. We must remain open to giving love and also receiving it. It is important to believe in the new efforts of people when they reach out to us. Sometimes past hurts and slights get in the way of that. It is hard to believe the person has changed. But that is precisely Dickens’ point. Ebeneezer’s healing and change only became complete when he reached out to and was joyously accepted and forgiven by the very people he had slighted and harmed in the past. That made the circle of joy complete. We are called to believe in the God who loves and calls us all. We are called to forgive and to give and receive with open hearts. Only then can we leave behind the crutches we have needed for our crippled spirits that have been hurt and afraid to forgive.
Now isn’t that a terrific introduction to the photo of my charcoal sketch below? 🙂