The holiday season is just around the corner despite all that we have to be thankful for, my heart continues to get tugged to the north in the wake of the Newtown Elementary School tragedy. Like most of the nation, I was horrified by the tragic events of last Friday. I couldn’t listen to the radio or read our Sunday newspaper that weekend… I stayed at an arms length from social media. It’s just in the last few days that I’ve been able to recover from the shock and come back to join the flow of current events.
But what I’ve seen and heard lately has been truly inspirational. For instance, the 26 Acts of Kindness movement that encourages an act of kindness for each life lost, the Causes.com Global Sympathy Card to show support of the Newtown Community, the Do Something.com 50,000 Texts of Hope banner that hangs in Newton, the Operation Fuzzy Wuzzy to donate teddy bears for the children (and adults!) of Newton, then the most touching of all, the K-9 Parish Comfort Dogs sent to provide therapy, support and joy.
And of course, a national moment of silence this morning with our own UNC Bell Tower in Chapel Hill, NC simply posting on their Twitter page: BONG +25 #SandyHook
I was listening to radio coverage earlier this week and a religious leader had said something about bringing the light down from heaven in his efforts to comfort those in mourning. I loved this imagery – of reaching up and grabbing a ray of sunshine and passing bits of radiance to everyone with whom I came into contact.
So even though the holidays may be a bit more somber than we’ve experienced before, this is a perfect time to remember what the season is really all about: kindness, joy, support, compassion and love for every man, woman, and child.
It seems like only yesterday we were consumed with Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Giving Tuesday – how quickly things can change. Let’s reach out to one another: hug our loved ones a little longer, greet our friends with heightened enthusiasm, grant smiles to strangers, have a bit more patience for others… and like rays of sunlight, spread the holiday cheer.
After all, when we lift our own spirits, we’ll lift theirs, too.