"I have never tried to walk through a mall in the Christmas season dressed like a jolly old elf. You might as well dress up like a pork chop and walk into an alley full of starving dogs." ~ Thomm Quackenbush, Author
This is it. It's Christmas week and I am off today. That's right. It's Monday, December 21, 2015, and I took a day of vacation. We are doing a Christmas party for some senior folks this morning at an apartment facility that our local assembly ministers to each week. You are never too old for Santa. We did photos with these older folks last year and it was one of their favorite parts of the party. I know most of you are probably tired of Santa stories but I've actually shown great restraint in only sharing a few along the way. Last week we were in a couple of Chick-fil-A's and they had a lady come to do photographs. The photos were to be emailed to each person later. The photographer is a wonderful lady and we got to have our pictures made with her children one evening. The photo in my blog is of her little girl. She was simply overjoyed to see us and could hardly contain herself. The lady wrote on her Facebook page how that she must have really failed to get the communications clear with her little girl. Because that night after her visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus when the little girl was saying her bedtime prayers she thanked Jesus for Pappa and Grandma Claus. Here's my response: I'll take it. Any day of the week and twice on Sunday!
I cannot tell a lie. That little girl actually wanted to sit in Mrs. Claus' lap. They always look at me and say, "Sorry Santa, what can I say?" I look at Mrs. Claus and she has this broad beaming smile. She looks like they just gave her a prize or something. I don't want to make a scene so I typically refrain from giving them my opinion on the subject. This child may turn out to be a renegade. If she is choosing Mrs. Claus today, what will it be tomorrow? You do know I am just joking around. Let me tell you that this little girl and her brother were both beyond precious. And, their mom, the photographer, is a sold out believer in Jesus who sees even her work in taking pictures of families as a way of witnessing to others. One thing the wife and I can be sure of is how that we have met some extraordinary people in our years of portraying these characters. One lady just went on and on about how cute we looked together. I couldn't help myself. I said, "And just think, they sent her over from the agency." My wife shot back, "Yeah, some 51 years ago." Oh what fun we have. We really do. I mean it.
My mom may be 91 but she still worries about her little boy. He may be nearing the 70 mark but she is still concerned that I get plenty of rest and that I try not to over extend myself. She told me the other evening how the wife and I, because of our age, needed to begin to rethink all these adventurous escapades that keep on us on the run. She didn't use those words exactly but that's more or less what she was talking about. It's no secret that this Santa has not felt 100% over the last couple of weeks. Doing 18 hour days including showing up and bringing joy far and wide, well, that is taxing even when I am at my best. The good news. God has helped me to do it and I finish my last two appearances today and if I make through them I think I should still be pretty much all in one piece. I'm thankful my mom still cares. I'm thankful others do as well. I'm even thankful my wife says I'm the most stubborn person she knows. I won't go into all the details but she seems very much satisfied that she knows that for a fact. I know Paw Paw Mac was considered to be a stubborn and determined man. That puts me in pretty good company even if it might not always be putting my best foot forward. Twenty one appearances have come and gone and now it's time to get on with the really important stuff, our special upcoming Christmas Day family festivities. I can hardly wait. May God bless each one. Amen. ....More later.
Many years in this sojourn here on planet earth and I have the scars to prove it but I have been, am now, and will be blessed to have had the privilege of doing what little I've done to honor God and serve others.