It’s been an eventful year for us, some good events and others not-so-good. We lost Owen’s youngest brother, Rodney, along with 22 other friends and relatives from our lives. Loss is certainly a part of life. For me, the year was filled with stories, and again, some good and others not-so-good. I spent 2019 writing my family’s story, doing ancestry research, and gathering personal stories of grandparents who were gone before I was born. Who doesn’t want to hear a grandparent story! And who doesn’t want to tell a grandparent story! I hope you cherish your own family stories, as they are indeed priceless. They are a part of who we are today. Now don’t get me wrong—our stories didn’t all have Hallmark endings; but through it all I did learn that “With God, in the end we win!”
It has also been an eventful year of news stories that you may have read or heard in the media. Some were amazing—others not so much—depending on what turns you on. For instance, this year was the 75th Anniversary of D-Day; it was 50 years after the Woodstock Music Festival; and the 50th Anniversary of Neil Armstrong walking on the moon. The 116th Congress had a record number of women at 125; Black Friday digital sales topped out at $7.4 billion dollars, and the stock market hit several new record highs.
On a much better note, Mister Rogers showed up again on A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood. Tom Hanks did a marvelous job in this story of forgiveness that will melt any embittered heart. It’s well worth your time to see. Yet, still better than all of that, our choir is rehearsing a Christmas song written by Gloria Gaither titled It’s Still the Greatest Story Ever Told. Her incredible imagery tells us everything we need to know about Christmas:
A woman and an angel, a promise and a song,
A word too grand for any mind to hold.
A tax law and a journey, a stable and some straw
These tell the greatest story ever told.
A hillside and some shepherds, a blaze of blinding light,
Angels singing carols in the cold.
Eternal revelation to men as dull as stone
The glorious, greatest story ever told.
Oh sing glory in the highest, He has come, our great Messiah.
Come bow before this awesome mystery.
Mighty God and fragile Baby here a lowly manger holds.
And it’s still the greatest story ever told.
My Christmas Wish for all of us is that we will recognize the miracle that happened one starry night in Bethlehem when God Himself entered our world. May we be as joyous as the birth parents, as awe-struck as the shepherds, and as full of praise as the angels. May any dull and stony hearts among us be melted by the warmth of God’s love as we marvel once again at the Christchild in the manger. It truly is, and always will be, the glorious, greatest story ever told!
Merry Christmas to all, Janie