Read TruthInConviction at

Tuesday, December 29, 2009


J. Grant Swank, Jr.

I laid off the news over Christmas. Local, national and international.

That meant that I came back to the old-fashioned American Christmas. And I didn’t have to make believe.

I met villagers who greeted me with “Merry Christmas.” It was actually “Merry Christmas” and not “Happy Holidays.”

Even in the stores, when I finished with my purchase, I noted clerks pausing. Were they told to say only “Happy Holidays” or could they venture “Merry Christmas”?

I beat them to the draw and cheerily gave forth with “Merry Christmas.” The clerks’ faces lit up and I got a “Merry Christmas” in return. With that, the matter was joyfully sealed with Christmas old-fashioned.

Even signs along our business route sported the words “Merry Christmas.” A couple were hold-outs for the nonsense politically correct “Happy Holidays” but the rest fell right in line with what we have known in America in December: “Merry Christmas.”

And when I turned on TV, talk shows didn’t hesitate to say “Merry Christmas.”

The seasonal movie channels had showing after showing of smiley-faced bottom line “Merry Christmas” this and that from every fun, loving angle possible.

On Christmas Eve, sanctuary-lighted churches throughout our area invited worshipers to services. Parking lots were full. If you couldn’t make it to the 6 PM time, 7PM or 11PM commuion would do. And so it went.

No daily news. No talk about DC. No political analyses. No Obamas.

Relatives gathered, gifts exchanged, carols sung, eggnog passed around the room and snow gracing the meadows.

Gift certificates topped the category pick for presents. Of course, there were still the silly items and stocking stuffers. But the next generation is teaching us how to hand over a favorite coffee stop card and so forth.

There were still enough wrappings to pick up under chairs and tables, toss into the trash and get on with pouring more water in the tree holder to keep greenery fresh.

Christmas cards were neatly stacked or taped to fridge fronts or more decoratively laced around the main room.

Phone calls to family members geographically tossed thither and yon carried voices loved dearly into our Christmas scenes.

In Maine, I concluded, are some of the most gorgeous winter scenes possible. God is so abundantly kind to us here in these northeast parts. And the plows cooperate! They are out promptly in this frosted state.

Driving up Douglas Mountain after a fresh snow is a delightful treat straight from heaven’s throne to our Lake Sebago clusters. No doubt about it. Pine tree limbs are laden with white puffs, the sky blue, then dark blue and then streaked evenings with the most orangish spread.

Last night I thought that round glowing moon was never going to go nighty-night. Our Christmastide moon kept watch to make nighttime like daytime white.

I scooped up some of my wife’s freshly baked cookies, especially the sugar cookies glowing with red and green luscious sequins. Then I slid a few other favorite types into one of those brightly decorated round cookie cans we store in the attic till December.

A greeting card and tiny pine branch topped the delicacies for our bachelor neighbor in the cottage down the road. When I knocked on his door, two huge dogs greeted me, of course. And next, Glenn. His broad smile said it all as he lifted the cookie can from my hand to his.

Then a rude thought entered into my festive head. It was intrusion rude. Nevertheless, after giving it room for a quick second, I dismissed it into the rubbish.

The thought was remembering Michelle Obama promising America that when she took over the White House—of course, Barack Hussein Obama by her side, America would transform.

Michelle said that when the two took chrage, America’s “conversations, traditions and history” would change.

Change? To what?

To Muslim, naturally. Without ruining this remembrance-thread with detail, suffice it to say that this couple determined—and still are on course with their plot—to remake America, particularly imploding its Christian heritage for Islam World Rule.

But this December, as I shut down the news flow for Christmas, I looked around me to realize that my neighbors, as far as I could fathom, were hankering for an old-fashioned American Christmas.

I concluded that Obamas just don’t fit in, no how. And they never will.

America will not be changed for the Koran’s Allah. America will return, God willing it, to what has made it the most fascinating place to live on Earth.