It's been a while since my last letter - almost thirty years - and I'm sorry for not keeping in touch better. I could make excuses about being busy or the time getting away from me, but we both know the reason I haven't stayed in contact is because I have lost a little faith as I've grown older.
I've never approached the holidays with a long list of material things that I've wanted. I evade the lines on Black Friday and rarely, if ever, get to see you sitting in your overstuffed chair, surrounded by a handful of elves bustling about, taking photos of the hundreds of children who line up for a chance to meet you and share their highest hopes of getting a puppy or new bike for Christmas.
You always seem so busy preparing for the big day when I catch a glimpse of you on television or in a film and I never wanted to bother you with my meager desires, but this year, there is something I need and it's important. I thought it best to get in touch before your calendar fills up after Thanksgiving.
[From the research I've done, you seem to work best when requests are presented in list form, so I've prepared the enclosed list for your consideration.]
PAIN RELIEVER AND SOME SUPER GLUE
There are a whole lot of hurting people in this world. People who feel like they've been gypped or lied to. People who feel hated, rejected and unwanted. People who are afraid. People who are downright broken.
Please send a big bottle of pain reliever so those who are hurting can feel better. We might need something prescription strength as I'm not sure the over-the-counter stuff will have the active ingredients we are looking for. These, specifically, are compassion, unity, understanding, empathy and respect.
Now, about this super glue... The brands you can get from the hardware stores aren't going to cut it and I know you can probably get your hands on the good stuff because those little elves of your's must be breaking toys left and right. Please send some of that and I promise to work diligently to repair the cracks and holes left behind from the calamitous season we've been in.
A NEW LABEL MAKER AND SOME OF THOSE X-RAY GLASSES
Our current label maker is malfunctioning. It's labeling everything in sight and printing phrases like "black" and "white" and "gay" and "Muslim" and "Mexican" and "right" and "wrong". It won't stop, even though we've tried to remove the batteries. It must be hard-wired into the electric grid.
Please send a new label maker. The one we need only has to print one phrase: HUMAN. Please also send lots of label tape as we will surely have a lot of corrections to make.
On that same note, it would be helpful to receive some of those nifty x-ray glasses. You know the ones they always have in the spy movies? They don't need to be able to see through walls or anything like that - just into people. My hope is that we can stop looking at outward appearances and seeing our differences, but rather look inside and realize we are all a lot more similar than we think.
A BOX OF FRUIT
Santa, I don't know if you are a religious man or not, but I've heard some old tales about you leaving fruit for children on Christmas morning, so I'm guessing you will probably agree with this next request.
I'd really like it if you could bring a box of fruit. Not apples or oranges. I'm referring to the Fruit of the Spirit. Love. Joy. Peace. Patience. Kindness. Goodness. Faithfulness. Gentleness. Self Control. I know it's a lot to ask but it should be easy to find. They are always in season, only come organic and will never go bad. Please bring extra for those who are really hungry.
This world is in bad shape, Santa, and we have a lot of work to do to fix it up again. We've not been assiduous in the maintenance and upkeep of our planet or the people on it. If there is anyone who can work a miracle, it'll be the man who can make deliveries to children worldwide in one single night. I know you can help us.
My hope is that we can become a loving world. A compassionate world. An inclusive world. That we can have conversations filled with respect and not hate. That we can understand that just because someone believes (or votes) differently than us, doesn't make them bad people and it doesn't make them wrong. I hope we can erase our orientated view of the world and see things without needing to label color and gender and religion.
My hope is to live in a world where there is no bigotry, misogyny, racism or homophobia but one full of all the good that lies at the core of every human being. I also hope for a world with a little more faith. Faith that these things are possible if we all put a little time and effort into it. Faith in the good of mankind. And maybe even a little faith in Santa Claus.
Your friend always.
"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law." - Galatians 5:22-23 (ESV)