EDITOR'S DESK: ‘Blessed are the Children’ who attended parade

Published: Wednesday, December 5, 2012 at 01:13 PM.

The theme of Saturday’s procession was “Blessed are the Children.” Many people believe children are somehow closer to God, as they’ve lived for a shorter period. Not fully experiencing a fabricated world’s hardships and injustices, they experience things differently than adults do and hold awe for life’s simple pleasures. The adage “ignorance is bliss” rings true, as kids can’t fully comprehend life’s ugly side, where people sometimes have sinister motives, ends justify means and corruption runs rampant.

For kids, every day is a roller coaster of adventure and discovery. Revelations about Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny and the tooth fairy come with maturity, but before the illusion wears off, these characters do more than give parents reasons to give gifts; adults temporarily rekindle their long lost innocence and wonder as they experience the season’s joy through their children’s eyes.

Snatch Santa Claus from kids and you snatch him from adults who could use a break from work woes, relationship problems and other stress factors.

Christmas is the ultimate time to “pay it forward” — that is, help someone different from someone who helped you, ultimately making the world a better place if everyone does the same. Like a story from the “Chicken Soup for the Soul” series, Santa Claus, and everything he represents, seasonally calls on us to put our best self forward and think of others.

That helps create a chain of love.

For instance, Monday, upon leaving the grocery store, I dropped a dollar in The Salvation Army kettle, knowing my dollar — in addition to others’ contributions — would help those with addiction problems, aid one of the organization’s social programs or help a stranger find a lost family member.

I won’t pass that kettle this season without giving to it. Knowing my small contributions here and there can transform someone’s life helps me grow spiritually, mentally and even physically, as living for others ultimately gives you more energy and drive than living for yourself.

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