It’s officially the “socially acceptable” time to talk about Christmas, so I’m kicking it off with a holly-jolly bang! For the next few weeks, I’ll be talking about my favorite Christmas movies and relating them to real life. I thought we’d start it off with one of my very favorites, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.”
Typically, the word “Grinch” is synonymous for a grumpy crab. If you just listen to his theme song alone, you can assume it’s not someone you’d want to hang around, especially during the holidays. However, if we all can honestly take a deep look at ourselves and the people around us, it’s pretty easy to see that the Grinch turns out to be a pretty relatable character. In fact, his story is quite beautiful. So, as usual, here comes the breakdown!
“Hurt People Hurt People”
People put walls up for a reason. We’ve all been hurt in life one way or another. Whether it’s past relationships, family dramas, childhood bullying (like the Grinch endured), or anything else, we all come up with different ways to cope. For me, isolation used to be my way of coping, but there are plenty of other vices we can choose from.
Another common vice is lashing out on the people around us. “Misery loves company” is a common saying for good reason. If I’m in a bad mood, and there are a bunch of cheery, happy people around me, there’s a fair chance I’ll be rolling my eyes. This Grinchy attitude is obvious, even if we think we’re hiding it well, and pretty soon, people will choose to keep their distance from us. Eventually, it becomes seemingly impossible to dig ourselves out of that rut.
It Only Takes One Act of Kindness
Cindy Lou Who is a pretty good example of who Christ calls us to be. All it really takes for us to crawl out of our Grinchy isolation rut is just one person to show us kindness, acceptance, and love. We aren’t called to do these things because God thought it would be funny to make us be nice to people who are jerks… We’re called to do this because He did it for us. The more we choose to bring light to dark places, the more people can experience the love of Christ.
Luke 6:27-36 – ““But I say to you who listen: Love your enemies, do what is good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. If anyone hits you on the cheek, offer the other also. And if anyone takes away your coat, don’t hold back your shirt either. Give to everyone who asks you, and from someone who takes your things, don’t ask for them back. Just as you want others to do for you, do the same for them. If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. If you do what is good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do what is good, and lend, expecting nothing in return. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High. For He is gracious to the ungrateful and evil. Be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.”
The Transformation is Real
We all have a transformation story that’s unique to us, but they all have the same general theme. There’s a distinct “before and after” we see when we finally accept and follow Christ. For me, there are many differences I can point out, but mostly, I no longer choose to isolate myself when I’m going through struggles in life. Whether it was my health, my anxiety, or just day-to-day dramas, I used to push everyone around me away. Now, I’m learning to surround myself with people who can help me walk through the tough stuff. For me, it took a Cindy Lou Who to help me fight through the lies I had been living by, to find a life worth living – and maybe [just maybe], you can say that my heart also grew three sizes that day.
2 Corinthians 5:17 – Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away, and see, the new has come!
Whether you’re still living life on Mt. Crumpit or singing “Dahoo Dores” with the other Who’s around the Christmas tree, you can pull something from this story. For me, during the holiday season and every season from this point forward, I’m making it a goal to be a Cindy Lou Who to the people who are stuck on Mt. Crumpit – especially because it wasn’t too long ago that I claimed residency there.
Matthew 5:14-16 – “You are the light of the world. A city situated on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 No one lights a lamp and puts it under a basket, but rather on a lampstand, and it gives light for all who are in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven.