How Jolly Are You?

“Tis the season to be jolly…” goes one of the favorite Christmas carols.  But is jolly just accompanied with holly and fa-la-las?  Is this just something for this time of the year?

My dictionary app defines the verb jolly as “in good spirits; lively; merry; cheerfully festive or convivial; joyous; happy; delightful; charming.”  That does seem to apply for some in this season of the year.  Many may feel this way as they are surrounded by family and friends.  Perhaps business success, great grades on finals, election results, or new opportunities in life can cause one to be jolly.  In Britain, it is also a slang term for one who is slightly drunk or tipsy.  That definitely applies to some folks! 

This season is painful for many as well.  We remember Christmases past and loved ones who are not at the table.  Some have passed on.  Some are off serving our country a long way from home.  Others may not be able to get home because of other commitments.  We hope to be together with them again.

For our house, it is full of excitement as my youngest son, who has been in Kentucky at college since August, is flying home.  Our oldest, who just took a job in a remote town in northern South Dakota, will be coming in as well.  We will have our family together, though our extended family will be several states away. In that sense, we will be jolly with our kids.  It also gives up hope for growth in the future.

This time marks the end of a year.  Most of us reflect on the wins and losses we have had throughout the year.  These can come in our business, school, or personally.  This year has been filled with both for our team at Pactola.  But I am joyful for our group and also the relationships we have established and have grown with those in this field.  We work with terrific people who are winners and who help those around them become winners.

Christmas Eve is also a special time for me as it was on that night, 25 years ago, that my wife accepted my proposal.  This event definitely makes us jolly and hopeful as we remember that night together as we opened gifts for the first time together and she put the ring on her finger!

Most importantly for this season of the year, amid all the parties, shopping, and events, I trust that you will remember the real reason this season is jolly and full of hope.  It is found in Luke where the writer pens, “a Savior is born, who is Christ the Lord.”  May your Christmas season be jolly and filled with hope this and each year.