How Far Is Christmas 2016

When we were little, it seemed that Christmas would never get here!!!   Now, as we all get older, it seems that we just got through Christmas of last year!

How do we reconcile our ambivalent feelings about this and other events of the year?

For one, I think we really have to “Live in the moment!”  I mean we have to experience the small moments that make up the big moments.  For example, each “Holiday” is a special celebration!  Even if it is “President’s Day” it is a special time for thoughtfulness and reflection.  The same with “The Fourth of July, Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas and any other special times you observe, as dictated by your religion or otherwise.

Treat each special time with the respect that it deserves and the time that it deserves.  When you are choosing Christmas presents, choose them with care and deliberation, so that your gift has meaning to you and to the recipient.  Take the time to “Enjoy” the season and its richer meanings!

Actually, before Christians “Christianised” Christmas, as my Pastor once said,

it was simply the time of the Winter Soltice, when the world did not end, but, the days began to be longer again and the evergreen was taken as the sign of  renewed life.   It was a time of joy and celebration for that very reason and later led on to the May Fair and so on.   The Epiphany of the Christ Child as the arrival of the Son of God, as Saviour of the World, also called Twelfth Day would actually not occur until around the 6th of January or so.  Some scholars say much later.

The child would be called “Emmanuel,” meaning God With Us.

How remarkable it is, that God would come down to Earth, in the form of Man to “Save the World!”  So that the world through Him might be saved!

Without getting too “Theological” here, we must each look, see, and listen, and examine our own hearts and minds about this special time of year and what it really means to you and yours.   But, I do think that it is the ultimate expression of God’s Love for Man that he sent His only begotten Son, so that the world through Him might be saved.

In our hearts, we carry the Spirit of Christmas, whatever that meaning is to you.  It does not boast but is humble in the love that pervades its presence!  Reach deep within you and grasp for that wonderful Spirit of Christmas, so that you and the ones around you may experience the deepest Joy of the Season!

Christmas is only that far away!

Merry Christmas!

 

 

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Pop and Clara’s

What is in a name, you may say!?!  Just about everything!

In the last few days I have been thinking about all the little businesses that have come and gone in my little community.  For all the reasons that you can think of, they seem to come and go like crazy.  Some are here for only a short time and others are here for decades.

So, I am making a list to reminiscence about some of these often magical places over time!

  • Pop and Clara’s Cafe and Pool Hall – Small little place where all the “bad” guys hung out after school in the pool hall (I think three tables) at 10 cents a game, in the back, behind the little cafe, where you could get a full lunch,  meat and vegetables or some of the best little hamburgers in the world!  Had quiet a reputation, both good and bad!  One time one of the patrons was shot to death behind the pool hall!
  • Taxidermy Store – You could get”stuffed” anything and everything you could imagine!  There were off course a million deer, fox, turkeys, rattlesnakes and you name it!  It did have a rather foul odor most of the time, but was a really unique place to visit!
  • Hardware Store – Everything you could imagine about “Hardware” was there – quite a nice little store.
  • Boxer Training Facility – Learn to box in your spare time or full time.  Professional training available anytime.  Full Boxing Ring and plenty of practice equipment!
  • Barber and Beauty Shops -Multiple shop operators over the years!  Some short time and some long time!  Some of the grow your hair people were here!
  • Electrical and Pipe Store for a Contractor –  Get all your projects done with this electrical and plumbing contractor.
  • Insurance Company – Get your home and auto insurance now!  Several of these!
  • Dental Lab – False Teeth Lab -With one of the most colorful personalities you could ever imagine!  He was very “frank” and actually that was even his name!  Very reasonable in price!
  • Paint Sales & Paint Disposal –  With significant remodeling and new lighting, etc., this became a premier location for all matters of “Paint!”
  • Antiques – Old & New – This was one of the most “quaint” little antique stores anywhere around!  I absolutely loved it and bought many little items there over a period of several years!  But, alas it closed!
  • Cleaners – For the longest time, with a neon “Clock” in the window, so the passing traffic could always tell what time it was!  This business was there for a long time!
  • Appliance Store – All the appliances you would ever need or want!  From new (?) to old or used – you could make a deal and be operating by sundown!
  • Mattress & Furniture -Take your choice – New and used!  In and out everyday!

I am sure I have forgotten some of the businesses that operated out of that “One Location,” a little non-descript building of approximately 1200 sq. ft. fronting on a major U. S. Hwy 78,  in Lithia Springs, Georgia!

For about 62 years, I have been following that building, visiting there, eating there, renting it out, shoveling paper work over its ownership,  writing leases

, fixing septic tanks, repairing major and minor damage, doing dis-possessions sometimes, cleaning up, painting, re-furbishing, roof repairing and everything else you can think of!   This has been one of the little “Business Gems,” if you could call it that, that me and my family have worked with all these years!

Even a little gold mine has to be worked very hard to  produce a little gold, but if you stay with it, it tends to pay off over time!   This is one of those examples you can take to the bank!

Oh, hold on, that’s a call —-   gotta go, the toilet is broken!!!    Again!!!!

 

 

Resolution is the Key

Life is a series of decisions and actions!

Whatever it is, you have made up your mind to either do this or to do that!  Even if you decide to not made a decision, you have effectively decided or elected to do nothing and to just see what happens.  Sometimes, that is okay also but, it is a decision or choice!

So, we all have “Choices” to make, and that alone is one of the strongest attributes that we each have as individuals.  Then,

when a choice or decision has been made, we need to follow that decision with “Resolution!”

This means that we can not be handsy pansy about carrying out this decision.  If you are in an airplane for example, on take off, you can not go down the runway at half power or you will never get off the ground, but you will run off the end of the runway!   Something is gonna happen!   It takes full power to make a take off, then after gaining some altitude, you can cut back on the power to cruise.

When we do other things in life, we should learn to approach that problem, activity or challenge with “Resolution,” which is a determination of focus to make that thing happen the way we expect it to.  Things do not always turn out perfect, but, at least we are on the right track and more likely to accomplish our purpose.

This “concept” applies to all things that we do. For example, take “sleep.”  If you are going to prepare to get a good nights rest or nap or whatever it is for you at the time, prepare for it accordingly.  Turn out the lights, turn off the television, set a quiet mood for rest, neutralize your mind into a meditative state if you can and prepare for rest.  If you do this with resolve and continuity you will, over time, accomplish what you are seeking.

I have often called it “Constancy of Purpose.”   Do things on purpose and with regularity and you will always be headed in the right direction, whether it be your work or play.  This has been one of the most powerful tools for me, which has benefited me in everything I have done over the years.  It reminds you why you are there and going the way that you are going!

Another great admonition is the old Japanese proverb  of “CANI,” which is Constant And Never-ending Improvement!  Never forget that every little bit matters, so keep taking those little steps of improvement in whatever it is you are doing!  I have used this as a business principle for years as well as in my personal life.

To be “Resolved” is to “Gird Up Your Loins,” in an older language, when Loin Clothes where actually used and just before battle or otherwise everyone would be reminded!  In other words, “Tighten Up!”  Things are about to happen!  In other times, folks have said that they had “Set their Jaw,” to do a task, or you have to “Take a Stand,” or “Plant your Feet!”  All these expressions sum up the expression, in different ways, of being “Resolved!”

Usually, we wait until New Year’s to come up with our New Year’s Resolutions, but in reality we should learn to live every day with “resolution” to be the very best we can, to do the very best we can, to accomplish what we set out to do, in short to be successful!

“Resolution” is a state of mind!