TODAY’S FORECAST: Amazed by simple truths
Last night our family sat down together and watched the holiday classic, “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” Growing up, this was one of my favorite Christmas specials. I’ve always loved the Peanuts comic, and this particular televised episode still makes me smile, even after watching it often enough to be able to recite it word for word. Last night as we were watching it together, I noticed something I had never noticed in the other 40+ times I’ve probably watched it. During the pinnacle moment when Linus makes his famous Christmas speech in answer to Charlie Brown’s desperate plea of “Isn’t there anyone who knows what Christmas is all about?!” he lets go of his beloved blanket. “Fear not, for I bring you tidings of great joy that shall be to all people…” cue Linus dropping his blanket. See for yourself on this YouTube clip http://youtu.be/DKk9rv2hUfA
For some reason this really stuck with me last night. Anyone who is vaguely familiar with the early Peanuts comics knows that Linus always has his blanket. Throughout the comic series, Linus’ big sister, Lucy, unmercifully tortures him about getting rid of it as does their “blanket hating grandmother.” Snoopy tries to kidnap the blanket in several storylines and the other Peanuts’ kids make fun of Linus from time to time. In one storyline, Linus tries desperately to break his attachment to his blanket. Honestly, I think the blanket is as much a part of Linus’ character as is Linus himself.
Linus’s blanket is his ultimate security, and yet when he recounts the herald of the angel to the fearful shepherds, he lets it go. The proclamation of the birth of the Savior gives him a seemingly superhuman moment of courage that allows him to let go of all his fears and focus on the important message at hand. What a lesson for us all. Don’t we all have “security blankets” in our lives that we rely on? Maybe it’s our habits, our self-image, personal wealth or our job title. Perhaps it’s the car we drive, the neighborhood we live in, or even our kids and their accomplishments. Whatever it is, as Linus demonstrates, it’s worth dropping for the true “reason for the season.” Thank you Charles Schulz for a timeless reminder.