The Heart of Christmas 2016

About this time every year I reread How The Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss. This story, like the story of Christmas, always brings new joy to me, and its message is always just what I need hear. In the language of our Living Compass Wellness Initiative, the Grinch, at the beginning of the story is clearly experiencing a lack of wellness-emotional, spiritual, and relational. While we never learn the reason for this, we do know that his lack of wellness is described as his heart being "two sizes too small."

As is often the case when a person is not well, the Grinch resents the joy and wellness of others around him. In the story the Whos down in Whoville are quite well, and are anticipating the celebration of Christmas with great joy. In distain the Grinch conspires  to rob them of the emotional, spiritual, and relational wellness that they are experiencing. Thinking that their joy is connected to their material presents, he succeeds in stealing all their gifts, assuming this will cause their hearts and souls to also become two sizes too small-just like his.

I'll let Dr. Seuss speak for himself about what happens when the Grinch discovers how the Whos actually react to his attempt steal their Christmas joy.

But this... this sound wasn't sad. Why... this sound sounded glad. Every Who down in Whoville, the tall and the small, was singing, without any presents at all! He hadn't stopped Christmas from coming, it came! Somehow or other... it came just the same.

He puzzled and puzzled till his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn't before. Maybe Christmas, he thought... doesn't come from a store. Maybe Christmas, perhaps... means a little bit more!

And what happened, then? Well, in Whoville they say that the Grinch's small heart grew three sizes that day. And then - the true meaning of Christmas came through, and the Grinch found the strength of ten Grinches, plus two!

The message is clear. The true meaning of Christmas is that God's Love has entered our broken world to bring hope and healing.  And so we celebrate that this Love is more powerful than any Grinch-like constriction that any of our's hearts or souls may be experiencing.

"The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it."   John 1:5.

We at Living Compass wish all of you a most Blessed and Merry Christmas. And may all our hearts grow three sizes, too, as they fill with the Love of Christmas this year.