In our neck of the woods, there is a sweet little house. A sweet little house that blows the roof off exterior holiday illumination.
This house fills its lawn with all shapes and sorts of light-up characters to appeal to every interest and current pop culture-infused trend.
The thing is, this house is, by all relative standards, understated. This house stands alone. There are no neighborhood decorating contests. There is no keeping up with the Joneses.
Amidst all the festive lights, there is a simple sign that dedicates the display to a woman who has passed. The sign asks passersby to “Enjoy the lights. She is.” The owner of the house knows that she is enjoying them from above, and wants to share the glowing light with others.
In doing this, the house gives a gift without any expectation of getting. It gives to make people smile, to make children gasp with glee when they spot their favorite character on the lawn, to give brief pause to all within the holiday crazy.
To share light in the world.
My heart melted when I read about the nearby neighborhood collecting funds to help fund the house’s seasonal electric bill, as a way of saying thanks for creating something special for all of us. It melted again when a friend shared that every year she too mails an anonymous card of thanks to the home’s owners.
It melts even more when I realize what this simple house, in it’s simple way, does. During this season of so much heart, hope, and family, it bears testament to the importance of glorifying what is beautiful. Of making pretty things shine.
And it does it a most real, earthly way. Mechanical tacky Santas and life-size Yoda figures included.
Because it’s not about perfection or class or decorating standards. It’s about celebrating what makes us happy. About sharing a shiny glow with those around you and being a light wherever you’re planted on this earth.
And for this light, I share the House on Hopewell.