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New Year's Resolutions, Bah, Humbug!

'Tis that time of the year again, time to make your New Year's resolutions. If you are like me, they are the same ones you made last year, and the year before that. I think everyone has been here before. The most common resolutions are to lose weight, to get more sleep, to save money and/or to have a positive attitude. But we all know that most of our best intentions or resolutions fail, or we just forget we ever made one. Bah, humbug!

Ebenezer Scrooge made a resolution, and it was made on Christmas morning when awoke in his own bed after the visit of the Ghost of Christmas Future. He vowed to "honour Christmas in my heart and try to keep it all the year." As I was thinking about how I would resolve to honor Christmas, I remembered a Bible verse that said, "do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with your God." I like how it is said in The Message version of the Bible:

But he’s already made it plain how to live, what to do,

what God is looking for in men and women. It’s quite simple:

Do what is fair and just to your neighbor, be compassionate

and loyal in your love, and don’t take yourself too seriously—

take God seriously. Micah 6:8

I think that this is what Charles Dickens meant when he said Scrooge vowed to honour Christmas and keep it all the year. He tells how Scrooge sent the Cratchits a turkey anonymously and then gave Bob a raise even though he was very late to work the next day. Dickens told how Scrooge gave generously to a man whom he had treated rudely when the man asked for a contribution to help feed the poor for the holiday. Scrooge walked the streets of London smiling and laughing to himself, and found pleasure in everything around him. He also said he did not care if anyone laughed at him because of the change in him and his outlook on life. Keeping his resolution to honour Christmas all through the year is the kind of life we can aspire toward in our resolutions. If we can keep this resolution all the year and years to come, then maybe it can be said about us what Dickens wrote about Scrooge. "He knew how to keep Christmas well, if any man alive possessed the knowledge. May that be truly said of us and all of us!"


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