Peace on Earth, Good Will Toward Men

I am a firm believer in trying to get along with others. After all, it’s one of the Ten Commandments of Kindergarten.

Illustration By Cynthia Petersen

We are taught to share, to forgive, to say, “I’m sorry” and “Excuse me” at a very young age. So what happens between the innocent age of childhood and our maturation into adulthood?

Many people keep that instinctive good nature, but others look at it as a sign of weakness. Maybe they were told growing up that they needed to be aggressive to get anywhere in life. Or perhaps they like the feeling of power intimidation gives them. It could be that they were treated poorly as a child and are taking their aggression out on others.

Whatever the reason, some people just don’t know how to be nice. I’ve heard it said many times that bullies just don’t like themselves and so they take it out on others. Though it’s believable, it still doesn’t take away from the fact that they hurt others with their unkind words and actions.

I love Christmas. The goodness of people just seems to ooze out of every pore. People actually look for good deeds to do and their smiles come  a little less forced than they do the rest of the year. The good vibes seem to resonate throughout the world and people just seem to be happier.

But there will always be the Scrooges of the world, who look at do-gooders as a threat to their existence. These people don’t know how to be nice and try to find a way to ruin everyone’s good time. But they are small in number. Especially at Christmas.

I’m a little sad that Christmas will soon be over and everyone will go back to their normal hectic lives. The good deeds done over the holidays will be forgotten in a flurry of anticipation for the next holiday.

But what if they weren’t? Can you imagine how nice the world would be if we could all just take a little time out of our lives to help others all year-long? People would be nicer, happier, more joyful. They would smile more, spread cheer throughout the world, and count their blessings tenfold.

What if it were Christmas every day? I’m not talking about presents, because that isn’t what brings the most joy. But the kind words, the noble gestures, and the love of our neighbor, because they are what Christmas is all about.

It may take some effort to get this world-wide campaign going, but I really think we have a chance at bringing Peace to Earth and Goodwill toward our fellow men and women. But for now, let us rejoice in the fact that it is Christmas, the most wonderful time of year.

Merry Christmas to all! (And to all a good night!)