Advent Cards Day 21: The Grinch

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Isaac slammed the door and began kicking off his boots while grumbling under his breath.

“Everything all right?” his mom asked.

“Not according to Mr. Hanson,” Isaac spat out. “Whatever I do for him is never good enough! I mean, it took me an hour to shovel his sidewalk, and what do I get for it? ‘You missed the second step, Isaac. You didn’t get all the way to edge.’ Mr. Hanson is a total grinch! This is the last time I help him out.”

Just then Isaac’s sister, Holly, came bouncing into the room. “Mom, the green popcorn is done, and the green soda for our grinch punch is cold. I can’t wait to watch How the Grinch Stole Christmas with our special treats!”

“I know a real grinch next door,” Isaac grumbled.

“Isaac,” Mom said gently, “I know Mr. Hanson can be difficult, but remember that he doesn’t know Jesus. The only way he’s ever going to change is if he allows Jesus to come into his life and transform him. Only God can make that happen, but we can point Mr. Hanson to Jesus by showing him love and joy, even when he doesn’t deserve it.”

“Kind of like how the Grinch’s heart grew three sizes when he saw how joyful the Whos were even after he stole all their Christmas gifts and decorations?” asked Holly.

“Exactly,” said Mom. “Even when Mr. Hanson is mean, that doesn’t have to kill your joy—it actually gives you a chance to show him the love of Jesus.”

“Hmm,” said Isaac, “I never thought about it like that before. I didn’t realize that just by shoveling snow and being kind to Mr. Hanson I was allowing the love of Jesus to shine through me. I’ll try to remember that the next time I shovel his sidewalk.”

“I’m glad to hear there will be a next time,” Mom said as she gave Isaac a squeeze. “And now it’s time to watch . . .”

“How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” Holly squealed.

“I think I’ll watch that movie with a whole new perspective tonight,” Isaac said with a smile.

So how about you?

When you have grinchy people in your life, do you still try to treat them with love and kindness? When we show others love and joy, it points them to the source of our love and joy—Jesus! He gives us the strength to be joyful in any circumstance. Trust Him to help you joyfully do good for others, even when they least deserve it.

Key Verse

1 Thessalonians 5:15 NIV “Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else.”

Key Thought

Joy points others to Jesus.

Further Reading

1 Thessalonians 5:13-17

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