HEARTLAND AMERICA CHURCH OF GOD OF PROPHECY Enough Of The Stuff
CHRISTMAS, MY PERSONAL PERSPECTIVE . . .
When the first sights and sounds of the Christmas season begin to appear, so do a flood of memories; and with the memories, deep emoons begin to sr within. First, let me say, I did not know that we were actually a family that would have been classified as poor in an economic sense. The fact is, most of our family, and certainly my circle of friends with whom I grew up, were all in the “same boat” economically speaking.
Christmas at our house was marked by the smell of a “real” Christmas tree. Mom would un-‐box all of her “Christmas stuff.” Candles, old cards, clumps of plasc holly, and all sorts of other various keepsakes would miraculously appear. I always looked forward to going to Murray’s 5 & 10 Cent Store to pick up those cool nfoil icicles that we carefully (just kidding) strung up
and down the branches of the tree. Mom would always try to salvage the old ones before the tree came down, but that never seemed to work well. The lights would go up first, of course, including those entertaining bubble lights. Those were a “lile hot to the touch” aer a while. Of course, mom would put my prize work of art under the tree. You know the one with Santa, his sleigh (coon-‐lined), and the reindeers (all hand-‐sawn from plywood and painted to match the colors of the season made at one of
my Cub Scout, Den 5 meengs (a work of art for sure!).
Then, slowly but surely, packages would arrive in the mail from Sears & Roebuck that wound up under the tree in that fun paper with the scissor-‐teased ribbons. I would watch in amazement at mom’s skill at making those ribbons so swirly. Those packages would be followed soon by the treasures rescued from the lay-‐a-‐way department at Sears.
Dad was a quiet man anyway, but he seemed to be especially quiet at Christmas me. He usually had only one day off work if Christmas fell on a weekday, and at least a half of a day on Christmas Eve, somemes. I wonder now if one of the reasons he was quiet was because he was wondering what the “final bill” would be for that stack of presents under the tree. Yes sir, there were always a number of presents there. Mom would always wrap everything separately to make it look like we had a “bunch” of stuff.
My mother wasn’t much of a singer, but, when you are lile, moms do everything well. “Silver Bells,” that was one of the songs she would sing. She sang the words she could remember and hum the rest.
Then, there was our Church Christmas experience. I remember I couldn’t wait to graduate from the “Shepherd Boys” (housecoats & head-‐towels) in the Christmas play, to one of the Three Kings. They were always the tall guys that got to
wear the aluminum foil clad crowns. Aer all, they had gis to bring to Jesus. Sweet, baby Jesus. We sang the songs, “Silent Night, O Lile Town . . . .”, and all the rest (which by the way were usually too high for most to sing as they were played “by note,” that new-‐fangled thing for musicians back then).
I guess we were poor by the
world’s standards. One small bathroom (but aer all, only one person used it at a me!), and two bedrooms. My brother and I had twin beds close enough to get into a rather good fist fight should the occasion call for it. Poor, maybe. I know my parents sacrificed to see that we had “more than they ever had.” I can honestly say, as I look back over my life at home, we had enough. We lived cleanly. We had food. We had clothes. I had a place to call “my house.” We had a family that included our HUGE church family.
If we have enough, isn’t that enough? I have to say, I would gladly give up that which we have accumulated to make life enjoyable and a lile easier, and a lile more. . . .
well, and a lile more, to hear mom singing, and see dad contemplang (whatever he was contemplang), and just enjoying enough.
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