In this Christmas season 2011 the fact that Jesus is our hope means so much more to me. As I write this column four days before Christmas, I am thinking about the changes in our world since our children were small. Many things have changed.
Christmas presents for kids have changed. Annie and Buffy went through a time when they wanted Cabbage Patch Kids. I remember frantic days right before Christmas when I could only locate one doll in the stores. Now I could order one off the Iinternet and it would be here is two business days. But not back then — we had to go from store to store looking. I remember that year I managed to find one at the last minute and Christmas for the girls turned out fine because they each had a Cabbage Patch doll.
Those dolls were the thing that year and to find a Cabbage Patch Kid was a true victory. Other Christmas gifts of their childhood come to my mind: Holly Hobby pajamas, Atari video games and beanie babies.
Oh yes, thoughts of these gifts bring back Christmas seasons of long ago when our children were in grade school and the days were innocent and I could easily protect them. Those were the days: Zia school, church choir programs, report cards that needed to be signed, parent conferences, the Shooters (Annie’s fifth-grade basketball team), Clovis Municipal Golf Course where John Scott practically lived, swimming at the “Y” and Centrifuge at Glorieta.
Now all these places and memories seem so far away yet so enduring in my mind, and I realize again that our world has drastically changed from the times when my children were small.
During this Christmas season, I am really aware of the wide chasm that separates my grown children’s childhood world from this present one. When the news is filled with words like weapon build-up and a country reactivating its nuclear capabilities, I find a sense of escape thinking about Christmases of long ago.
I read with sadness about the rise of poor in our country and the children who are always hungry and think about my children who never went to bed hungry. I read about missing toddlers and other hideous crimes and drugs and gangs, and I find a sense of escape looking at the girls’ old Cabbage Patch Kids. When news of high price gasoline and health insurance costs are rising with the New Year, I see the simplicity in a child’s allowance. When I read that the FBI is preparing a vast database of biometrics so people’s physical characteristics can be chronicled for quick identification of anyone around the world, I remember that our children had no idea what the word “terrorist” meant.
Yes we face uncertain times. The first step for the New Year 2012 is to trust Christ as our savior. When we face anything unknown, direction, peace and comfort are always available to us from God. The second thought is to know that God is in control, even in what we do not know and what we do not understand.
When will God decide that time will be no more? No one knows; we can only be prepared. Jesus himself said: “You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour and a moment when you do not anticipate it.” (Luke 12:40)
This is the hope of Christmas — Jesus Christ. He came as a baby, became our savior and will come again for us. We know that Jesus Christ will take care of all matters that concern us today. No matter how out of control we think the world may be, the ills of the world and the crimes of man will be over when Jesus returns.
Judy Brandon is a Clovis resident. Contact her at: