Governance & Membership
President's Message - December 2022
A Christmas Carol
By Jim Hicks
The holiday season is upon us; and on behalf of the Oklahoma Bar Association, I want to personally offer my best wishes to all members of our organization and express a sincere thank you to all who stepped up in the past year to further the mission of our association. I am especially grateful to all the volunteers, leaders and staff members who helped make 2022 such a wonderful year by helping those in need throughout our legal community. We are all blessed by a profession that gives us many privileges. Our profession allows us to seek fulfillment and success as each of us chooses. Our profession allows a focus on family, friends and loved ones. Our profession allows us to work as individuals and yet work together for the common good. But that privilege obliges us to give much back to the communities and profession we serve. Whenever lawyers see an opportunity to make a difference, we must seize it because of our training and unique ability to effect change in society.
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens is a short novel that follows the mean-spirited and avaricious protagonist, Ebenezer Scrooge, as he undergoes a profound journey of self-discovery and redemption over the course of one Christmas Eve night. After he climbs into bed, Scrooge is visited by three ghosts of Christmas. Each ghost, in turn, teaches him an invaluable lesson. He is forced to watch his own troubled past as he suffers mistreatment and heartbreak. Later that night, Scrooge is taken to the home of his employee, Bob Cratchit, as he celebrates a meager Christmas with his family as a result of Scrooge’s greedy wages. Here, Scrooge sees that Cratchit has a son, Tiny Tim, who is disabled and may not live to make it to the next Christmas dinner. Scrooge watches as Cratchit makes a toast in honor of him, despite how unkind he has been toward his employee. Cratchit’s unconditional graciousness toward Scrooge, as well as Tiny Tim’s humility and happiness despite all his hardship, is one of the catalysts for Scrooge’s change of heart.
The lessons so clearly illustrated in A Christmas Carol can significantly impact you in a positive way this holiday season. This classic piece of literature teaches two main morals that should be understood and valued by everyone. The first moral of the story is that no matter how harsh or cold-hearted someone might seem on the outside, everyone has burdens they carry with them that affect them deeply. Because we never know what someone may have gone through in the past or is going through currently, it is always important to treat them with love and grace. The second moral is that showing kindness and love to someone, no matter how much you dislike them or how heartless they may seem, has the beautiful ability to change someone’s life. As attorneys, we have the incredible ability to use our words and actions to influence the lives of those around us, and it is up to us to use this ability for good. My wish for each of you this holiday season is that each of us take this time to consider those less fortunate and do what we can for them.
While the years simply seem to come and go, we must admit this time of year is a "special season." Plans are made to travel, take some time off, share time with family and remember those who have gone before us. We indulge in special treats and special meals, and we look to the future with that certain excitement and rejuvenation. So as I reflect on 2022 and look forward to 2023, please accept my sincere best wishes and warm thoughts for a happy and healthy holiday season and a productive and positive New Year. And in the words of Tiny Tim, “God bless us, every one!”
President Hicks practices in Tulsa.
Originally published in the Oklahoma Bar Journal – OBJ 93 Vol 10 (December 2022).