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Tuesday, December 25, 2012
Silent Night and Busy Day by Jerry Hinkle
I spent a little too much time at the Allen party last Sunday, and as a result was about 2 minutes late to my paying job, luckily I show up late about as often as my mother burns the gravy, so the boss knew I wouldn't make a habit out of showing up late. Either that or nobody noticed the slight tardiness on my part, at any rate, I hit the ground walking very fast, managing to leave the work area cleaner that it was when I arrived.
Christmas Eve saw me back on the job, quite busy, but out by 3pm. After fueling up at M&H, I made it to the Ponderosa at about dusk. My brother Dougie and his family was already there. At first the plan was to go to Methodist Midnight Mass at 9:30, but the temperature was -9 outside and my mother had sliced open her finger while she was slicing the prime rib roast.
This morning the silent night was filled with the sounds of Hinkles eating pancakes, bacon, and two kinds of sausage. My dad became rather insistent that we change the oil in my Park Avenue Buick, Teenage Mutant Ninja Danny, which was due for it's 6000 mile checkup. Dougie took charge and soon discovered that my tires needs inflating and rotating, and that a few of my headlights and tail lights were out, and needed changing. Nobody said owning a luxury car is easy!
Christmas Dinner went well, with my brother Darrel and his family joining us, as well as Ken and Joyce Ferris. As Christmas day gave way to Christmas evening, most of the guests started leaving until it was just me and my parents.
As I look out into the dark cold winter night through the dining room picture window, I notice how truly dismal, depressing and desolate the month of December is outside in the country. Back at Mitchell there are plenty of lights outside. Lights that offer protection from the unknown, as well as a cheerful break from the darkness of the cold winter. I can't see those lights from the Ponderosa, but I know they are there. I can barely see the lights of Holabird and Highmore from here as well.
We celebrate the miracle of light at Christmastime because at one time there was no light. With all the depressing news of death and violence lately, it can get us down if we let it. Darkness could surround us. But we who are people of God are called to be the light of the world, a candle by the window to offer security guidance and cheer in the dark days. If indeed the media is waging a war on Christmas, the body of Christ appears to be losing. But the light cannot be overcome by the darkness unless we snuff it out. I hope we can keep the light of Christmas burning on the inside that radiates to the world the whole year through.
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