Of course, Christmas morning is always the best part of the day. Luke and Maddie were practically radiating happiness while opening their gifts.
(Despite my threats that Maddie would not get a Santa gift because of her rude letter, Santa was feeling kind and gifted Maddie as well this year)
(And after one lap around the block on his new bike, what did Luke want? His old bike…well, actually, his balance bike…the one that he got for his second birthday, the one he never, ever wants to ride.)
I’m so thankful that my kids enjoyed their gifts, that my family came over to eat and be merry, and that I am financially able to give my kids a great Christmas.
But I’ve also been thinking about peace lately and how to achieve peace, both in my life and the world.
From Luke 2:1-14:
And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
This is one of my favorite biblical passages, partly because it’s all about Christmas but more so because it praises God, a God who wants peace on earth and good will toward men. And I really don’t care whether you believe that Jesus is the son of God or not or really whether you even believe in a God because when it comes down to it, I think all of us (well, all except the total loonies) want peace on earth. While some would argue that Congress passing the new START treaty is a start, I think differently. How about no nuclear weapons at all? How about no wars? How about no genocide?
This seems like a good goal. This seems like a world I want my children and grandchildren to inhabit.
But, I also believe a world like this is impossible. Because as much as I want peace and harmony and good will toward men in the world, let me just outright admit that I don’t have that in my own life. And no one else I know does either.
Don’t get me wrong, I think I’m a good person. But I make hasty judgments and laugh at other’s expenses and participate in gossip and lose my temper and try to get my way and, well, the list could continue for a long time. I bet I’m not alone. I mean, I have this favorite yoga teacher and every time he starts class he always says, “Leave your ego at the door,” meaning it doesn’t matter how good or bad you are and that the yoga studio is a place of non-judgment. But then, I always find myself staring at some amazing yoga girl and wishing I could have her strength or her body and then I’ll look over at some other person and gloat on the inside because I’m more flexible than that person. Quite frankly, I don’t think I’ve ever left my ego outside the door. I don’t even know if it’s possible.
I like to tell myself that this is human nature and (as I’ve been taught by Christians all around me), I am not meant to be perfect or totally good all the time. That’s why Jesus was born–to die for all our sins.
I’m not totally sold on the Jesus story, though I do believe in God, but I’m also not completely sold on the idea that to be mean and hurtful is human nature. However, I don’t know how exactly to be more peaceful. I think that would make me the boring girl. Every fun, interesting, awesomly amazing person I know is that way because he/she talks shit all the time. That’s what makes he/she so funny! Even the blogs I’m drawn to are hilarious in that the blogger is usually talking shit all the time.
This is a dilemma: while I do strive to be more like Jesus (or at least every once in a while think: what would Jesus do?) or Mother Theresa, I also don’t think Mother Theresa nor Jesus would have been much fun at a cocktail party.
But again, the dilemma. Because I sprout world peace and then don’t practice it myself. If I can’t achieve peace in my life on a daily basis, how can I expect countries to? Or the world?
I can’t expect it. And I’m not sure how to manage it myself. If only life could be as easy as a song lyric: Imagine all the people living life in peace. You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. I hope someday you’ll join us, and the world will be as one.
But seeing how today is celebrated as the birth of Christ and John Lennon wrote a really great song that’s been playing in my head all day, I think I’ll try my hardest to bring more peace in my own life, especially in my own demeanor.
And if I’m not the most fun girl at the party, I can live with that. I’ve never been anyway.