How the Grinch Stole Christmas! is a popular children’s story by Dr. Seuss. Published in 1957 it then became an animated short film originally airing on CBS on December 18, 1966. It is one of the very few Christmas specials from the 1960’s to still be shown regularly on television.
Surprisingly, the show continues to be popular in ratings, with its 2010 airing (the last of many times it had aired that year) winning its time slot among the 18 to 49-year-old crowd and finishing second in overall viewers. Not too shabby for an old cartoon!
It’s a classic tale of Good vs. Evil.
The Grinch, with a heart “two sizes too small”, has hated Christmas for 53 years. Weary of the Whos joyful celebrations he schemes to ruin Christmas by stealing all their stuff.
With the help of his lovable and laughable dog Max he pulls a Christmas Eve heist. Before dropping the loaded sleigh off the mountain, the Grinch waits to hear a sad cry from the Whos, but it never comes.
On Christmas morning the Whos joyously begin to sing Christmas carols, proving that the spirit of Christmas does not depend on material things. The Grinch begins to understand the true meaning of Christmas and his heart grows three sizes—granting him “the strength of TEN Grinches, plus two!”
He brings everything back to the Whos and participates in the holiday feast. He is even given the honor of carving the roast beast, while Max gets the first slice for himself for all his troubles.
The obvious message is that Christmas is more than the stuff. The less obvious message is that good can overcome evil. Paul, in his letter to the believers in Rome, wrote:
Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. ~ Romans 12:21
The Whos live out what Paul declares and Jesus modeled! All of this from a children’s book!
For all the joy that comes with the Christmas season there are plenty of harsh and hurtful moments as well. They come in lots of ways both big and small. Among family, friends and even total strangers. When that happens…
… let’s overcome evil with good and respond in love!