Spreading goodwill during the Christmas season

According to the Gospel of Luke, Chapter 3, in the 15th year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, John the Baptist was spurned forward by a Holy Fire and went into the country preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.

A crowd gathered to him, seeking redemption and salvation.

He gave advice to the tax collectors and the soldiers, but for the common folk, his words were simple. “Whoever has two coats must share with anyone who has none; and whoever has food must do likewise.”

Break away all the hustle and bustle. Tear down the decorations and the traditions. Tune out the tinkling music of the season. And that is the 2,000-year-old still-beating heart of why we celebrate the Christmas season.

For God so loved the world, he gave his only begotten son. A man named Jesus who died for our sins. And we celebrate this time of year, loving our fellow man and trying our best to follow the example he laid out for us.

Peace on Earth. Goodwill toward men. Sometimes it’s hard to follow the simple advice John the Baptist gave those yearning for salvation. Times are hard. Though we are okay today, who is guaranteed next week, next month or next year? It is easier to build our own fortresses of money and possessions, which protect our own families and which protect ourselves.

Each year with the Lincoln County Toy Drive we turn to you, along with the Fayetteville Rotary Club and the Fayetteville Fire Department, asking that you help us provide Christmas toys for Lincoln County children up to the age of 12. We know we are one among a seemingly endless line of charities that ask you to dig deep, and invariably you do. Thank you for that. But when times are tough and there is so much need, it is sometimes easy to think that you’ve made your quota.

Our local charities are all worthy and do good work.

Enough is, of course, a relative idea. Only you can truly know what a sensible limit is. Only you can decide if you have done enough.

We’re not here to ask you to do more than you can. We just want you to know that this Christmas, like every Christmas, there are needs in our community, needs that will never be sated.

We know that no matter how many food baskets are given out, how many toys we put under other people’s Christmas trees, the job won’t be done. There will always be more who need our help.

Because we know there are those who can’t feed themselves or their family this Christmas, local charities will do their best to feed as many of the hungry as they can.

We do not have it in our power to grant the eternal Christmas wish of Peace on Earth. But goodwill to men? That we can, and will, do.

If you have already helped a local organization, we thank you, but if you haven’t, will you?

Posted on Tuesday, December 17, 2013 at 6:21 am