So the good news is that Amazon has been selling a lot of my books this December. The bad news is that I’ve spent two or three days each week standing in the long line at the downtown post office mailing books to the Amazon Distribution Center in Whitestown, IN. The good news is that for all my line standing, I haven’t heard one person complaining beyond making obligatory jokes. The bad news is that not everyone in line speaks English so I don’t know what they are saying … but they don’t appear to be angry.
The good news is that we all handle long line waits better when we have entertainment, which is what we all have nowadays on our phones. The bad news is that means we are staring at our phones instead of talking to each other … not that I talk to strangers in line very often.
The good news is that one of the happiest Window Clerks at the post office says “Merry Christmas” to everyone he waits on, every day, in spite of what you may have heard on talk radio or read on a Facebook rant about how that greeting is now illegal … it isn’t, and it is still uttered by many. The bad news is that the post office no longer allows Salvation Army bell ringers to stand outside the door with their kettles … Cyndi taught me to drop a dollar in every time I pass by, but I pass by so few lately and I miss it.
The good news is that on Monday, the woman behind me in line quietly hummed Christmas carols to herself the entire time, in her deep, rich alto voice, and it was delightful … I would’ve turned to make a request but I didn’t’ want to embarrass her. The bad news is that the post office doesn’t have song leaders to help us all sing carols together as we wait in line.
The good news is that a large portion of my church’s live nativity was performed by members of our Sunday School class, and it made me very happy to see them sharing the gospel story in this creative way. The bad news is that I almost missed seeing it at all because I stayed too late visiting with friends and our new “family boyfriend” … I caught about fifteen seconds of their performance before they broke character and left for warmer shelter.
The good news is the Christmas season, and I love the friendliness and graceful air that exists between people. The bad news is that we don’t like each other the rest of the year.
The good news is that you don’t have to be swept up by the commercialization and competition that the laziest of us complain about, but you can choose to be happy, generous, kind, loving, and unselfish … go ahead, make the choice, you’ll be satisfied. The bad news is not enough people make the choice of generosity over resentment … generosity is life’s secret sauce, and it will make every aspect of your life better, richer, and deeper.
The Good News is Emmanuel, God with us … the Breath of Heaven breathes into us a fresh start and a new life for 2015. There is no bad news, in that.
“I run in the path of Your commands, for You have set my heart free.” Psalm 119:32