"Christmas was illegal in England from 1647-1660. This was enforced by the then leader Oliver Cromwell who believed it was immoral to hold celebrations on one of the holiest days of the year. The celebration of Christmas was therefore a criminal offence which could lead to an individual being arrested if he or she was found guilty of condoning any revelry during the period."
Last night at a family Christmas party my Grandpa had brought up a conversation he had with one of his nurses. Recently my Grandpa had to be put on dialysis - and one day one of his nurses came up to him and asked if he knew how lucky he was. He replied with a "Well, yes, I believe I do". She then explained that where she was from (I can't remember what country he said) they didn't have dialysis - it was too expensive, even for those considered well off.
I sometimes let myself get so caught up on the little things (and even some things that may not be so little) and forget the wonderful freedoms and blessing that I enjoy ever day - like hospital care.
I'm especially grateful for the freedom of religion, that lets me worship how I want, that lets me be close to my Savior without any worry, and that lets me celebrate Christmas with wonderful friends and family. :)