Mad Jack Hanks: Tales From The O-NO Ranch 12-24-12 |

Mad Jack Hanks: Tales From The O-NO Ranch 12-24-12

Is it really that time of year again? Yep, sure is. Boy it seems to roll around faster and faster every year. It seems that way to me. And you?

Since I was but a mere child, gentle readers, our world and our approach to this blessed season has changed so much. Christians and Christmas have come under attack for the last several years. I think that is a doggone shame, especially this time of year. Once a celebration for the precious gift that believers receive and the peace, hope and joy that we are to share seems to blow away in the wind at times.

Folks line up to fight and stomp one another in the big box stores in order to be the first to grab this or that so their kid won’t be without one. Or sometimes they won’t be without a certain gadget. It’s crazy. It reflects badly on who we are and what some of us have become as a society.

I like to reflect on the better times when our children were just that, children. That time on our place north of Amarillo when one of the neighbors decided to play Santa and surprise the area children on Christmas eve. He called ahead and said he would be outside our door at a certain time and to please put any bad dogs away. He would be jingling bells and “laffin” a hearty laff. When the kids heard those jingle bells and the laughter their eyes were as big as saucers. Santa came in with candy and said he would be back later with gifts. What a joy to observe the excitement those kids displayed.

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The time when son Andy was only two and we took him to the mall in Amarillo to see Santa. Santa popped him up in his lap and with a booming voice ask, “Well, little man, what would you like for Christmas?” Peering out from under his big ole cowboy hat, Andy first looked at us and then again at Santa and meekly whispered, “A rifle.”

“Oh, so ya want a rifle do ya? Do ya want a 22 or a 3030 or what?”

Somewhat confused and wanting not sound greedy, he replied as he first held up one little finger, “Just one, maybe two.”

He figured if ole Santa could bring him 20 or 30 someting rifles, one or two would do justice. What a sweet moment in our lives. Moments you never ever forget.

Christmas, dear children, is about giving and not being greedy. It’s about, to me anyway, the joy of seeing someone else joyful and happy with what they have received even if it is of little value. The value, my friend, is in the giving. That’s the way it was designed, it’s in the giving.

I have a certain charity that I give to on occasion during the year and it’s one of the children’s hospitals. It hurts me to see little ones suffer through pain, fear and illness when they have hardly begun to live their lives.

I watched a video just yesterday of radical terrorist giving a sword to a child of preteen years and demand that he behead a grown man tied and laying on the ground. The lad did as he was told. It was horrible. There are no words to describe the horror. That’s the world we live in. Count your blessings this Christmas, be thankful for what you have and the things you don’t have.

Myself, Howdy, the fat paint hoss and Clancy, the wonder dog, wish you and yours the very best during this holiday season!

Stay tuned, be cheerful, be of a giving nature, stay tuned and I’ll c y’all, all y’all. ❖

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Mad Jack Hanks

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