It’s Christmas Weekend, so let’s make a deal.
Let’s not argue about tax policies, sexual harassment, North Korean threats or presidential preferences.
Can we agree on just one thing this weekend? That we’ll put down our verbal arms and link arms instead?
There is a precedent, which many of you already know about. We harken back to Christmas Eve 1914, in the trenches of a Western Front battlefield.
In a document later published by The New York Times (hold the Fake News retorts, please; it’s Christmas!), Graham Williams of the Fifth Rifle London Brigade wrote:
“First the Germans would sing one of their carols and then we would sing one of ours, until when we started up ‘O Come, All Ye Faithful’ the Germans immediately joined in singing the same hymn to the Latin words Adeste Fideles. And I thought, well, this is really a most extraordinary thing — two nations both singing the same carol in the middle of a war.”
An excellent article on Time.com adds this:
The next morning, in some places, German soldiers emerged from their trenches, calling out “Merry Christmas” in English. Allied soldiers came out warily to greet them. In others, Germans held up signs reading “You no shoot, we no shoot.” Over the course of the day, troops exchanged gifts of cigarettes, food, buttons and hats. The Christmas truce also allowed both sides to finally bury their dead comrades, whose bodies had lain for weeks on “no man’s land,” the ground between opposing trenches.
(Read the whole article: http://ti.me/16RvyQw )
No man’s land, by the way, was about 100 feet — just over a third of a football field. Death was that close. So was friendship, albeit fleeting.
The point is, if they could do that then, maybe we can do something now.
For this weekend, at least, let’s give the gift of kindness. Kind words. Kind gestures. Kind acts.
By the time Tuesday rolls around, who knows? Maybe acting a little bit like Christ will have become a habit.