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It really is a wonderful life. How wonderful depends on your character. Are you Clarence? Do you aspire to earn your wings helping others soar? Perhaps, you’re George Bailey. A downtrodden optimist with a bruised butt from boot kicks.

Possibly, you’re Mr. Potter, paralyzed by personal pain incapable of caring. Clarence left the cushy comforts of his heavenly home, jumped feet first into troubled waters, to save a lost soul in peril. He did it because it was necessary. It took little convincing. He willingly accepted the assignment with childlike enthusiasm. That’s why he’s so loveable. He wanted wings like a child wants a puppy.

From above and below, Clarence had a clear perspective. He had utmost empathy for humanity because he understood the sorrows of life and the joys of heaven. He also knew it was impossible for anyone born on earth to skip one experience to achieve the other. To be truly divine, you need to know both sides of the story. Whatever your destiny, you must have heart before earning your wings.

George Bailey wore his kind heart on well-dressed sleeves. His propensity for compassion was commendable. Unfortunately, it made him a sucker for unscrupulous opportunists. He was a soft touch with a hard head regarding wickedness. He refused to imagine anyone was irretrievably evil. George was an idealist derailed by life. He insisted on seeing niceness in the nastiest people. George went blind shining the Golden Rule and lost sight of himself.

Mr. Potter, was an amoral monster. Crippled by greed, he was powerless to put his best foot forward. A self-proclaimed savior, the cloaked behemoth trampled through Bedford Falls un-remorsefully destroying everything in his path. Mr. Potter coveted curses from citizens as much as their cash. Compassion was an aberration to him. His appetite for angst seemed insatiable. Gleefully gluttonous, he devoured dreams like aged Kobe beef. Mr. Potter owned everything, yet had nothing of worth. He hurled hatred at anyone who didn’t revere him. He couldn’t buy what he craved most so he stole hopes instead.

So who are you? It might not be as black and white as a Frank Capra film. Do you get something special by giving something wonderful? Is your spirit calloused from constantly colliding with calamity? Are you crippled by greed and indifference? Why not adopt an angelic attitude this Christmas? If a person needs something, be Clarence. Help them for heaven’s sake. Wings are the finishing touch to a life well lived. There are angels on earth. Christmas is their time to shine. Let’s make some bells ring this year!

– Jim Shock. LBSPY #48 (Dec 16-Jan 13, 2014)


Publisher/Editor in Chief at HashtagWV | + posts

HASHTAGWV ART & ENTERTAINMENT Publisher/Editor-in-Chief, Christina Entenmann-Edwards has been a WV resident since September 2008. She was born and raised in Fairfield County, Connecticut, and is no stranger to hard work and the entrepreneurial spirit. In 2006, she graduated from Quinnipiac University (Hamden, Connecticut), Cum Laude, with a B.A. in History. In 2010, she graduated with an M.B.A. from Liberty University (Lynchburg, Virginia). In February 2012, Christina launched HashtagWV as the area’s first full-color, free arts and entertainment tabloid + online platform. Christina completed the Leadership West Virginia class of 2021, which is an innovative program that grows, engages, and mobilizes leaders to ignite a life passion to move West Virginia forward.

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