Christmas Isn’t about Fulfillment… But It’s a Starting Point

Dear Reader:

As darkness descended Christmas night and crowds of neighbors’ families/friends left with cars moving in and out on our usual quiet little road…it was evident Christmas was ending…I knew it was time to reflect on Christmas 2019.

John and Mandy gave me a box of the extra large Duraflame logs and nothing is more decompressing and anti-stressing than watching a fire slowly flicker… bringing warmth and contentment. “All was calm, all was bright.” 

Christmas Eve Ben and I watched some favorite old Christmas movies…laughing out loud at the same funny lines we have heard repeatedly, but they never lose their humor. They have become ingrained as part of our Christmas traditions.

We left at nine Christmas morning to attend John and Mandy’s family Christmas brunch in Mt. Pleasant…an opportunity to watch the grandchildren open the presents I got for them and hear what Santa brought. We had a large crowd consisting of family and friends…and boisterous children.

*I don’t think Jesse’s tree has anything on us. Humans and animals gathered together in remembrance of Jesus’ birthday..just like the first Christmas…bringing presents.


Delicious brunch, wonderful fellowship…all the trimmings for another great family Christmas tradition gathering…Eva Cate was delighted to get “little Pinkie” since she always wants to snuggle up in mine when I spend the night. So now we have Big and Little “Pinkies.”


Doodle’s home is always so beautifully decorated…and nice to see other members of the family we don’t have a chance to see as much…the weather was perfect to walk outside and enjoy Christmas 2019. Five of the six Dingle siblings (Bill was missing) were all together in this Christmas photo.

When I got back…while Ben was watching television I promptly fell sound asleep. When I woke up…it was 6:00 and dark…I sat up in puzzlement as to the day and why I was sleeping this time of it. Ben came in off the porch and told me to hurry and come see the Christmas Star. It was beautiful…one lone star shining brightly down on the yard. This (photo with my limited iPhone abilities doesn’t do it justice)…but the star gave me chills.

Many of our momentary desires were probably met in retrospect yesterday but don’t we always have an inner wish that the ‘big ticket’ items could have been given, not just to us, but everyone. A cure for cancer and other potential serious life-altering diseases, be allowed to see a loved one who has passed away-if only for a moment, fix a broken relationship, or overcome depression.

Pick up a newspaper and not read about wars and more wars, political conflicts, examples of extreme poor stewardship of our precious planet. The list could go on and on…all “Big Ticket” items that will take more than a credit card to fix.

“Advent isn’t about fulfillment. It is about longings that are not going to be fulfilled for a long time. Christmas didn’t fix everything, but it started the fixing. Now we have Someone to wait with us…we’re not waiting alone.” (All I Really Want)

So until tomorrow…Thank you God for waiting with us…and while doing so…holding our hand. Amen.

“Today is my favorite day” Winnie the Pooh

*We now have in our family the “Little Drummer Boy.” Rhodes got a drum set for Christmas and was tearing it up yesterday!

Meanwhile his kissing cousin, Eloise, is still getting smooches from two big brothers…a lot of loving going on…but isn’t that what Christmas is? Love!

Look at this creative Nativity Manger I got from Walsh and Mollie…the figurines are made out of oyster shells.

I hope one and all… you had a wonderful Christmas and together as fellow inhabitants of Earth we can find a way to bring the large ‘ticket items’ to reality for the next generation!


About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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