Things I Love, Things I Hate

I hate cold, I hate winter, I hate snow – I hate Santa. That sounds more like an opening line for “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” than my usual upbeat, positive blog, yet all these statements are true.

Grasshopper cover #3

I hate snow because it’s cold and I hate cold and being cold. Probably dates back to childhood, surviving in sub-standard houses, some of which had no heat. Then cutting and gathering firewood in the ice and snow with no gloves or warm outer garments. As for Santa, he gets bashed because if you teach children Santa brings them gifts and then they learn it’s not true, will they believe in God?

Thanks to all of you who read my blogs. I love and am thankful for each one of you. And I’ll forget about stacking icy firewood with raw bleeding hands and take a positive turn.  I’ve just released a new mystery-romance-suspense book, “I’m the Grasshopper.” Releasing a new book always raises my cheerful volume, even in the cold, cold winter.

Newspaper staff writer Stacy Estes has never forgotten the fate of her childhood pet – a grasshopper – when it encountered a spider. Her failed romances make her view herself as the grasshopper and men as spiders. She. Is. Done. With. Romance.

Stacy is a runner and hider. Until she trips over a body at her grandmother’s house and goes from reporting the news to being the news. Stacy fights to keep her secrets intact, including her physical disability, especially from the first love of her life who has moved back to the community. Lost treasure? Gold mining in Texas? Flying saucers on her grandmother’s hill? And what about the men who go into the Comanche Cliff store – but never come out again? Mysteries entangle and endanger Stacy. When a local poacher is jailed for murder, Stay’s life unravels.

Her investigation into the murder victim on her grandmother’s property takes her to the strange world of boanthropy, where people believe they are cows. It sends her into a confrontation with satanic worshiper “Snake.” And she is slated for the next sacrifice.

“I’m the Grasshopper” is a great Christmas read, clean enough that the kids or Grandma can pick it up and read it, yet packed with excitement, adventure, mystery and love. Stacy has a physical disability, but does that make her a “cripple,” as a heartless co-worker labels her?

To give credit where it belongs, the Bible promises in Romans 8:28 that “All things work together for good to those who love the Lord.” Being in extreme pain and on crutches for months gave me the idea for the story and characters. God is always faithful to His word. I’ve since had successful spinal surgery, so it will be a very Merry Christmas for me.

To all of you reading this blog, have a Very Merry Christmas and a Deeply Blessed New Year. Thanks for being there! God bless.

Grasshopper cover #2

CHRISTmas Light

Some associate Santa with Christmas. He rides into town on a fire truck and throws candy for children, or lands in a helicopter, or stations himself in malls and stores for photo opportunities.

The inspiration for these events came from a poem written in 1823, “A Visit from Saint Nicholas,” and a song written in 1933, “Santa Claus is Coming to Town.” Both poem and song birthed the popular U.S. image of a red-clad, white-bearded present-bearing Santa.

However, far more populous, present, and visible than Santa – are lights. Atheists attempt to steal CHRISTmas by demonizing the friendly “Merry Christmas” greeting and insisting on “winter holidays” or “seasons greetings,” but the joke is on them. For as long as CHRISTmas lights dispel winter darkness with cheery spots of brave color, hearts will be reminded of Jesus, the Light of the world. “For the LORD will be your everlasting light.” Isaiah 60:20. And in Jesus’ own words, “I have come as a light into the world, that whoever believes in Me should not abide in darkness.” John 12:46.

The conspiracy to take Christ out of CHRISTmas is not new. Public schools began fazing out nativity scenes for children to color and replacing them with Santa on a rooftop; Santa’s sleigh and reindeer, and Christmas trees nearly 50 years ago. Christmas carols like “Joy to the World” and “Away in a Manger” were replaced with “Here Comes Santa Claus” and “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.” The anti-God, anti-Christ movement picked up momentum over the years like a bulldozer headed down a ski slope. Today, the war on CHRISTmas and Christians is real and really vindictive.

Still there are lights. Colored lights and white lights at Christmas lifting hearts and drawing souls closer to worshiping God, in Whom is found no darkness. The atheists and “anti,” “politically correct” crowd may glom on to the fact that lights proclaim the Light of the World, Jesus and outlaw them too. For it is possible to dispel darkness by lighting even one light, but when one light is shining – nothing can bring back total darkness.

And when the atheists and their followers outlaw lights for celebrating CHIRSTmas, the moon and stars will still point to Jesus, the Creator and Sustainer of the universe.

The Lights have it.


Why I Hate Christmas

I hate Christmas.

Hate it because I love giving and Christmas is the perfect season of the year for giving – yet I never have enough money to buy all the things I want to give.

I hate Christmas because imaginary Santa has replaced real Jesus, the Reason for the Season.

I hate Christmas because the emphasis is put on commercial sales rather than on the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ and the gift of eternity that He gives to the world for free.

I hate Christmas because it’s associated with snow and it must be cold to snow.

I hate Christmas because it’s been hijacked by atheists and special interest groups. School children can color pictures of Santa and reindeer on rooftops, but not the manger where Baby Jesus spent His first Christmas. School children can sing nonsense songs about a snowman, but not “Joy to the World, the Lord is Come.”

When Bob, or Marty, or Mary, or Susan have a birthday, we sing, “Happy Birthday, Susan, Mary, Marty, Bob, etc. But on the day that is set aside to celebrate the birth of Jesus, the Savor of the world…we dare not mention His name for fear of offending someone and are expected to say “Happy Holidays” instead of Merry CHRISTmas.

But, really, could anyone hate Christmas?

I love Christmas lights. Jesus is the Light of the World. His brightness is reflected in every glittering bulb that knocks a hole in darkness.

I love Christmas trees. Some equate Christmas trees to pagan history and spurn them. Jesus made trees. Wood was important to Jesus during his lifetime on this earth. He worked with His stepfather Joseph, a carpenter. He carried His cross on His bleeding back. He was crucified on a tree. Some claim a dogwood tree held the Lord Jesus. They point to the blood-stained petals in the shape of a cross with a crown of thorns in the middle. When I look at a Christmas tree, I don’t see a pagan symbol. I see the celebration of creation, redemption and victory over death.

I love Christmas because I love giving. Even though I never seem to be able to give everything I want to give at Christmas, I love a day set aside for giving instead of receiving – small kindnesses like taking baked goodies to neighbors or providing meals for the homeless.

I love Christmas because families come together. Before his death in a plane crash on November 17, my son Marine Corps Major Luke Gaines Parker was planning to fly me from Scotland to North Carolina to spend Christmas with him. He gets to spend his first Christmas in eternity with Jesus while I spend it down here missing him – but I still love Christmas. Every bright and colorful light will remind me of the blessing I had being his mother, however briefly.

So I don’t really hate Christmas. I love Christmas. I love Jesus, the Reason for the Season. And if I never received another Christmas gift in my life, I would be joyful because I’ve already received every blessing of God in this life. I was chosen to be Luke’s mother, and I have the eternal gift of salvation, purchased for me by Jesus at the cost of His blood.

Then there are the added gifts God has bestowed on me; husband and fellow author Alan T McKean, our rough collie dog, Angel Joy, and the gift of writing.

So, Happy Birthday, Jesus! And to all, Merry CHRISTmas!