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XTaking some liberties with the letter X and using the book A Christmas (Xmas) Carol for the letter X in the A to Z challenge. There are some letters that are very difficult to blog about, Q, X & Z being the chief ones for me. And, to my chagrin, they fall at the end of the challenge, just as I’m also deep into packing for our move.

During Christmastime my family is a creature of habit, there are a few things we always do this time of year:

  • Watch our favorite holiday movies:
    • Home Alone 1 & 2
    • Dennis the Menace—not really a holiday movie, but we usually watch it on Thanksgiving
    • It’s a Wonderful Life
    • National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
    • White Christmas & Holiday Inn
    • Scrooged
    • A Christmas Carol—we own the George C. Scott version, but often watch the Muppets one or An American Christmas Carol with Henry Winkler
  • I also take a break from what I’m reading and re-read A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
  • Last, and this is new this year, I take a break from whatever Bible study I’m doing and concentrate on the birth narratives in the Gospels.

One of my favorite lines in A Christmas Carol has always been:

Darkness is cheap, and Scrooge liked it…

Every year I find something new to ponder in this classic and this past year it’s the inter-play between light and darkness.

The cover of my copy

The cover of my copy

The tale is dark. You see this especially in the film versions. Everything is dark and foggy throughout the movie. The shift to light is dramatic when Scrooge throws open the window on Christmas morning to bright sunshine—I wonder if anyone has thought of making the movie in black and white until that moment, then dramatically changing to color when he throws open the window?

It is reminiscent of the passage in Isaiah, “…the people walking in darkness have seen a great light…” Truly the light that comes into Scrooge’s life is a great light.

What does Ebenezer mean? What a name, Ebenezer Scrooge! Here’s bit of a definition I ran across:

The word Ebenezer comes from the Hebrew words ’Eben hà-ezer (eh’-ben haw-e’-zer), which simply mean “stone of help” (see Enhanced…, 1995). An Ebenezer, then, is simply a monumental stone set up to signify the great help that God granted the one raising the stone.

I believe that Dickens, a  Christian, choose that name to signify how God helped Ebenezer see the light and enjoy Christmas to its full.

I’ve written elsewhere that I feel as if my life is being restored, a light is coming on in what has been a dark chapter in my life. I am thankful for the light and for the Christmas season. I am poor and so I struggle with the commercialism of this season. In the midst of that it is hard for me to remember the true meaning of Christmas and to truly live as an heir of the Kingdom. Nevertheless, I am determined, along with Scrooge, to “keep Christmas well” and to echo Tiny Tim, “God bless us, every one!”