When “There’s No Christmas Like a Home Christmas” hit the airwaves in 1950, less than 10% of homes contained only one person. Today, one in four of the homes on your street is occupied by a single person living alone. Twenty-five percent of people say they have no one with whom they can discuss important matters, and another 20% said they have one – one! – good friend. A 2010 AARP study found that 35% of all adults over age 45 are chronically lonely – a 75% increase in ten years. And 60 million people are unhappy because they are lonely. Surely some of them are your neighbors.
Visions of sugarplums aren’t dancing in every head this Christmas. Some homes are decked with loneliness. Sappy movies are sure to bring tears when your own story has a decidedly unhappy ending.
This is where you come in, neighbor.
I know you don’t have time, no one does – especially at Christmastime. But in our busyness, let’s not forget the best gift of all: Christmas presence.
If you’ve got joy to spare, please share it. If you’ve got leftover pie and a seat at the table, please fill it. If you’ve got an extra Christmas card, please deliver it by hand. Take a moment to let your neighbors know you care, you’re there. They are not alone.