'Christmas Carol'

Thursday Reflection

17th December 2020

'a wake up call on Christmas Eve'

"Lazarus died
 and the angels carried him
 to Abraham's side.
 The rich man also died
 and was buried.
 In Hades,
 where he was in torment,
 he looked up and saw
 Abraham far away,
 with Lazarus by his side.

 remember that in your lifetime
 you received your good things,
 while Lazarus received
 bad things,
 but now he is
 comforted here
 and you are in agony.

....Luke 16:22,23,25

One of my favourite books
from my childhood is
Charles Dickens'
A Christmas Carol,
I love the film
of the same name.

Invariably shown at Christmas,
and if I'm feeling nostalgic
during the year,
I reach for one of my
DVD's of the story.

It tells of a crotchety
old man named Scrooge.
Mean and miserly,
he gets a wake up call
on Christmas Eve
from three spirits.

Tthe ghost of Christmas past,
present and future.
Midway through the film
there is a scene that
always challenges me.

Scrooge is being
visited by the ghost of
Christmas Present.

At the end of
Scrooge's lesson,
the spirit opens his
big cloak to reveal
two pitiful,
emaciated children;
their names are
Want and Ignorance.

Why would this friendly spirit,
who seems full of
good will and cheer,
be sheltering these pathetic
looking children?

And what exactly is the
lesson to be learned?

The story is showing
to Scrooge those in need
whom Scrooge has neglected,
and although that is true,
two other aspects are revealed.

First it is showing a place
of security and peace.
A haven for those who
come to him,
sick and unloved,
full of ignorance and want.

the spirit is showing the very
characteristics of Scrooge himself.
Scrooge was selfish,
bad spirited and miserly;
he was living in a state of
deep ignorance
and self-absorption;
he did not even think
about his actions.

His philosophy of life
was so deeply embedded
within himself that
he didn't realise what
harm he was doing to himself.

Scrooge was in want
but ignorant of that fact;
he was wasting
away in his misery.

Scrooge may have been
financially rich but was
woefully poor spiritually.

He himself had become
want and Ignorance;
and if he did not change,
his fate was death.

This poses a question

Do we become so
desensitised by our way of
thinking that eventually
our attitudes become
our very nature?

Do we think
we are so perfect
just as we are
that we do not see
our flaws and
poverty of spirit?

We cannot see ourselves
as God sees us.

God knows all our flaws
but sees beyond them to
our potential for excellence.

He loves us so dearly
that he is waiting with
his cloak open wide
and inside he provides
a place of
protection and blessings.

It is there we shed our
sinful nature
and become clean,
whole and forgiven.

Then he opens his cloak
to show others that their
imperfections are accepted
into his love.

Let's thank God
that he loves us in
our present state,
but loves us too much
to let us stay there,
and remakes us
in his cloak of love.