As we all anticipate Christmas, I think of our ancestors and how our families have grown through many generations. Of course, family and faith guide many of our rituals and gatherings during the Christmas season. Our churches have special services and celebrations during the month leading up to Christmas.
No doubt many, not unlike what we see today, suffered lots of not so prosperous years. “Hard-luck” Christmases brought an apple or orange and a few bits of candy in the stocking hung by the chimney if they were lucky. Most of us have been very blessed or even spoiled with material things and many children today are lavishly given an overabundance of gifts.
The only real thing necessary for a good Christmas is love and loved ones nearby. Jesus is the reason for the season and we are free to worship and praise God thanks to all of our soldiers in harm’s way who fight for our freedoms everyday. Many give the ultimate sacrifice.
Our lives cycle back and forth with rough patches from year to year. Many families are experiencing life-altering events like the loss of a job or loved ones. Some military families are sacrificing with a loved one deployed overseas. Nations are in turmoil and our own leaders seem to have made few compromises or wise decisions this past year. May peace and unity prevail throughout the entire world!
As you celebrate with loved ones, try this gingerbread muffin recipe. It makes me think of hard times when there was limited sugar in times of war. Sugar had to be purchased with ration stamps so cooks turned to molasses and cane syrup for sweeteners in desserts.
It is my wish, and that of Historic Effingham Society, that each of you will have a safe and blessed Christmas and New Year. Please pray for the sick and bereaved, our soldiers and their families, those who are down on their luck, our leaders in the United States and other countries and those that we love. Enjoy the festivities and don’t eat too many goodies! We wish you all a healthy, happy 2014.
This was written by Susan Exley of Historic Effingham Society. If you have photos, comments or information to share, contact Susan Exley at 754-6681 or email her at: firstname.lastname@example.org.