The Christmas Spirit Switch
Just who is it that is responsible for turning off the Christmas Spirit, for throwing the Switch from ON to OFF?
On Christmas Day less than half of the clients at the Abbotsford Emergency Shelter wanted even a small plate of food and the Shelter itself was just over half full. The free breakfast and turkey dinners around town this Christmas Day had them all as stuffed as the turkeys they had consumed. During the previous two - three weeks there was an abundance of meals, food and care packages for the poor, hungry and homeless.
On December 26th the switch was thrown, the Spirit turned off for another year and greed was out in full force prowling the Boxing Day Sales. And the Shelter was again full of the homeless who were once more cold, hungry and unwanted.
This is written on New Years Day in a Shelter overfull with clients who have devoured every crumb to be found. What a difference a week makes. They face the bleak cold hungry days of January and a year lacking the promise of anything better. With the upcoming year holding out to me the promise of challenges to be met and things that need accomplishing I cannot help but ponder the Christmas Spirit Switch.
This Switch is why the Abbotsford Food Bank and other such charities work so hard and long at raising funds through donations during the Christmas Spirit Season. They HAVE to raise the majority of their yearly operating budgets during this short yearly outpouring of the Christmas Spirit. Because once the Switch is OFF, getting donations is an uphill battle against the inertia of indifference.
Of course the answer to the question about the Switch is that we are each responsible for our own Christmas Switch and turning OFF our Spirit. I have resolved for the New Year to try to keep my Spirit Switch in the caring/helping/giving position, even when some members of the homeless community have me contemplating homicide.
We each get to choose whether the Spirit of this season if OFF until next year’s Christmas season or stays ON in the caring/helping/giving position throughout the entire year. Take a moment to ponder your Switch and whether your Spirit will be ON or OFF during this New Year. It is Your Choice.