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Nothing this year has been normal or “business as usual”. 12 months ago, we were excited to enter into 2020, predicting great things. And then COVID-19 hit, followed by the riots, looting, rebellion and then one of the most politically charged elections since the civil war era. But there is still hope.

Hope that our nation will heal. Hope of reconciliation in so many areas where we are lacking. Hope that the vaccine will help us return to a state of some normalcy without endangering ourselves, our families and our neighbors.

It’s fitting that the first vaccine, and possibly a second one, is coming out between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Thanskgiving is a time to reflect on gratitude when many of us were isolated, alone and not feeling very thankful. And Christmas is the time when our country and many of our religious traditions point to the ultimate hope.

This is the time we look to the Christ child and the promise of salvation coming. We celebrate the miracle of the oil, candles illuminating our lives, our homes, and our remembrance of past promises fulfilled. And we come together, as family and friends, whether in person or virtually, to make merry, exchange gifts and prepare for the next year.

It is our fervent desire that, despite this long, troublesome year, you will see and embrace HOPE. In the midst of being with family – or in spite of not being able to come together – we hope you will discover the promises of faith. The joy of the season. And the expectation that as we start a new decade that 2021 will be everything we thought this would be – and more. From all of us here at Grow the Dream, we wish you a very merry Christmas!