Potato Christmas by M. Wayne Clark
Since the beginning of time, stories have revealed core beliefs, cultural values, trials, struggles, successes, and what the heart treasures. From generation to generation, stories have given us a glimpse into the lives of those who came before us. Stories deep within Christian tradition help us to better understand our own personal journeys as we walk by the light of faith. Potato Christmas is a most unusual story. The setting is a rural community in Ireland at the tail end of the Potato Famine (1845-1851) and a few years following the famine. While the famine affected the total population, those who suffered the most were the poor. Many were tenant farmers and farm laborers; however, sorrow and grief and the pain of loss were suffered by all classes. In the broken places of our spirit, we find our strength. In the darkest of nights, a light shines to guide us to a new day, but only through the eyes of faith can the light be seen. Natural or human-made forces bent on destroying the human spirit can never defeat those who truly believe that on a distant night in the small town of Bethlehem a child was born. This child, Christ our Lord and Savior, is the greatest gift and act of love ever given. All we have to do is accept it and live out a life that practices giving to those we know, those we meet, and the stranger who comes our way. Potato Christmas will set the tone for your holiday season to be especially meaningful.