The other evening I was driving through Brooklyn on my way home. As I passed through town, I was greeted with many lighted decorations hanging from the power poles-- colorful candy canes and sparking wreaths and candles. For some reason at that moment it brought to mind the town of Bedford Falls from my favorite Christmas movie, Frank Capra's "It's a Wonderful Life" with Jimmy Stewart and Donna Reed. I have not seen it this year, but certainly will look for the opportunity. I couldn't quiet grasp what I wished for as I drove and reminisced. At first, I thought it was just the coziness of a small village.. the simple... the uncluttered...the unpretentious. But that was only a part of it.
You know in the movie, George Bailey, has given up on his dreams in order to help others. Due to his feeling of failure to accomplish his dreams and accumulating financial problems he becomes despondent even to the point considering suicide. Then with the intervention of the angel "Clarence," he is able to see what the town (now called Potterville) would have been like had he not lived. George is able to see what the lack of his giving... the lack of his generosity would have begotten. Potterville was an ugly town..cold..greedy..selfish.
You see the movie is all about giving and the difference it makes. Isn't love simply giving? That is what I was wishing for..hoped for the other night. Simply to see more love and less selfishness and greed and narrow soul shrinking hate. Wasn't that the essence of the man whose birth we commemorate this season ..and have celebrated for centuries. His was a message of love....more giving. More charity toward all and malice toward none as Lincoln succinctly encouraged. What a difference--- more Bedford Falls-- fewer Pottervilles --more peace on earth. I think we can become more like George Bailey... more like Jesus don't you think? When does it begin?...why, you know the answer....now, now and now.
December 6, 2012