Last weekend in Pigeon Forge, a pleasant looking man - probably around my age - asked if he could come up and just talk to Santa for a few minutes. I said, "Of course! You're never too old to talk to Santa!". He walked up and sat next to me on the small leather couch that I sit on in the "Santa Room". We shook hands and I asked him what was on his mind. He looked at me...hesitated...then said, "Santa, I'm afraid I've done some things that have put me on the naughty list." I gently laughed and said, "Well, we all have our bad days my friend. Just ask Mrs.
Claus.". Still looking me in the eyes, he said, "No, really. I don't think I'm doing a very good job lately. Can you give me some advice?". I realized that this man needed to talk to someone. So, I said - "Well, the best thing that I can suggest that you do is to love everyone. I understand that it's hard to do sometimes. Especially with what's happening in the world over the last few weeks. But if you strip everything else away, that's what God - or the God of your understanding - expects us to do. Treat each other like we want to be treated and show love whenever we can." His eyes were moistening, as he asked me "How do I know for sure that I'm really doing that and it counts? I mean, I don't go to church as often as I should." I looked at him and said, "It's in your heart. Myself, I believe in God and He knows what's in my heart. Stop being so hard on yourself and beating yourself up over not going to church 'as often as you think you should'. Fill your heart with love for everyone, treat others like you want to be treated...and let God do the rest." This was all happening very quietly between the two of us. The photographer asked if he'd like to have a picture with Santa. He stood up and said, "No thank you. I got what I came for. Wisdom from Santa." We did the guy hug thing and he was on his way...smiling.