This year I’m noticing a lot of talk and interest in the original St. Nicholas of Asia Minor. He was born circa 280 AD in what is now Turkey. He was a devote Christian under Roman rule. He is perhaps the most famous for helping three sisters from a poor family. Their father was faced with selling then into servitude as he didn’t have anything for a decent dowry. Nicholas lost his parents at a relatively young age and inherited a good sum of assets. He secretly left bags of gold coins for the three sisters, but the father caught Nicholas and thanked him so profusely his secrete act of generous gift giving became widely known and was added to the tradition started by the wise men giving gifts to Jesus.
The Bible tells us the night Jesus was born sheepherders saw the beautiful, awful and amazing sight of Heaven’s host proclaiming “Peace on earth and good will toward men.” That had to have been a fundamentally life changing event to those men. Wouldn’t you change if you saw Heaven opening up? When I think of peace I think of my family’s Christmas Eve tradition. My brother and sister-in-law, mother and wife join me at my church for an early candle light service. We then retire to my mother’s home for my favorite meal of the year. Everyone cooks up their favorite dish and we share; usually we share pork tamales, boiled prawns, gumbo and potato salad. The deserts are incredible as well; fudge, cookies and pies. All home made from scratch. After that gustational repast (made possible by farmers who got enough water) we gather in the front room by the fireplace and read the Christmas story from the book of Luke. Then we exchange gifts and take turns opening them. It’s a dark and cold world outside; but for us it’s soft lights, freedom from hunger and the warmth of familial love and togetherness.
I want to thank all of you for your support of WaterWrights.net this past year. It has truly been my pleasure to cover the extraordinary creativity of farmers getting water from a far from imperfect system. I’ve met a lot of incredible people and I’m proud to say I believe I’ve become friends with many of them. Now that you know what I mean by peace, I pray for you and your families to have a peaceful Christmas and a healthy and prosperous new year.
Don A. Wright