My husband and I love to support local entertainment so we bought tickets a few weeks ago to see a community play across town this past Saturday night. The weather outside was truly frightful with heavy rain and winds, but we decided we would venture out anyway.
We arrived at this lovely facility which was very festive. A company was having a Christmas party in one of the ballrooms so the smell of food combined with the sound of a DJ playing music added to the spirit of the season.
The holiday classic tale “A Christmas Carol” is one of our favorites. This production was really enjoyable as the actors put a different spin on the presentation with a witty narrator and delightful humor interwoven.
At the end of the production everyone was on their feet clapping. The encore was the audience singing (with the encouragement of the cast members) a rousing chorus of “Joy to the World!”
Dickens included so many lessons in this timeless story and the more I thought about it the more I realized what a master of allegory Dickens was. First, there’s the surface of the story. You know, the characters and plot and all that obvious stuff. Then there’s the symbolic level, or the deeper meaning that all the jazz on the surface represents.
- Scrooge feels sorrow and remorse when the spirit showed him how poorly he treated others. For the first time in his life he saw himself for who he really was ~ a humbling moment in anyone’s life.
- Scrooge’s bitterness had roots in his early life but he allowed it to devour him. I once read an analogy and it went something like ~ Bitterness is like swallowing a poisonous pill and expecting someone else to die when in reality the victim is ourselves.
- Initially Scrooge wants nothing to do with the three spirits. But eventually he does begin to listen to them and through his listening he begins to learn and move forward. We also have the potential to grow and change in ways that not only enrich us, but those around us as well ~ just like Scrooge ~ if we take the time to listen and learn.
- The spirit showed Scrooge that he wasted his life obtaining power and money and this will one day come to an end. It is important for us to bear in mind that our lives will also end one day and we still have time to change. Living with the end in mind might help us as it did Scrooge.
- There is joy in change. Scrooge realized he had a second chance at life. For the first time in a long time, through his jubilation, he began to connect to the real world again. He asked forgiveness from the solicitors he refused to give money to the day before and made restitution. He spread unexpected joy and generosity to others. It is interesting to note that when Scrooge awoke that Christmas morning literally nothing had changed in his circumstance. The only thing that DID change was his heart.
We may think it is too late to change, but in reality the best time is now ~ a lesson Ebenezer Scrooge teaches us well every Christmas.