“Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!” Luke 2:14
On Saturday evening, I attended a Christmas parade. You must be thinking; “Libby, you have your seasons mixed up. Yesterday was Halloween.” A Christmas parade was held on Chinaberry Lane; in Concord, NC on October 29, 2016. All the neighbors had the outside of their houses fully decorated for Christmas.
The parade was put on by the Concord Fire Department. Hoisted on their moter-cycles; four Concord policemen began the parade with their lights flashing and sirens blasting. Several of the fireman had Christmas decorated their firetrucks. They had their sirens blaring and one even had Christmas music booming from the truck’s loud speakers.
Neighbors and friends drove their vintage cars; some donned with beautiful women riding on the back of their convertibles, all waving and shouting, “Merry Christmas.” The Cox Mill High School Marching Band could be heard coming around the bend, playing “Jolly Old Saint Nicolas”.
A group of handsome boy scouts dressed in their uniforms; proudly marched in front of the high school’s flag team. Those precious girls knew how to twirl and hurl their flags to the Christmas music beat. Last but not least; Santa was up on a firetruck, waving and saying HO, HO, HO, Merry Christmas.
As I stood videoing the whole thing; I missed Chinaberry Lane; where my family had lived for twelve wonderful years. These dear people know how to love their neighbors as themselves.
I’ve kept you in suspense long enough. Here’s your answer to “the why;” these people were celebrating Christmas in October.
A precious lady named Michele is dying of cancer. What began as breast cancer; has now metastasized to her brain, liver and bones. This dear fifty seven year old woman of God; has continually given Him all the praise, honor, glory and blessing, for the good life she has enjoyed.
Michele told her family and neighbors, that Christmas is her favorite time of year. The doctors had given her the news that she probably won’t be here that long.
She only told one neighbor and the news spread like wildfire.
Everyone jumped in and put up their outside decorations. Her family celebrated Christmas on Saturday evening before the parade. The parade was a surprise for her. Every night; Michele’s husband pushes her in a wheel chair, up and down Chinaberry Lane, to behold these Christmas lights.
Michele and her family were all seated on the lawn in front of their house. After the band stopped to perform several Christmas carols, about forty some neighbors gathered to sing carols for this sweet saint.
On this seventy six degree night in October; I witnessed the true meaning of Christmas. I watched these dear people give out “peace and goodwill” toward their neighbor.
If you would like to hear Michele’s story please go to WBTV, Charlotte, NC’s web site to see her video. There is also one available from People Magazine.
Prayer in Motion:
Oh God; may we give out “peace and goodwill,” to the saved and the unsaved; to those that are living and to those that are not long for this world. Bless these neighbors, family and friends who lovingly celebrated Michele’s life journey. Lord, we pray You would minister love, joy and peace to Michele; until the day of her Heavenly Homecoming. In Jesus Name. Amen