THE MORNING EDITION By Mike Huckabee
Good morning! Back in 2011, inspired by my book “A Simple Christmas,” I asked listeners of my radio show “The Huckabee Report” to share their own favorite family Christmas memories. Some are heartwarming, and some are hilarious, but all of them are inspiring and wonderful. These are some of their stories::
- Angels are watching over us
- Hard times
- Prayer Tree
- And Much More
1. DAILY BIBLE VERSE
This verse was recommended by Gabriel M.
13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength.
Philippians 4:13 NIV
Please send [email protected] a Bible Verse recommendation if you have one for the newsletter.
THE LATEST NEWS
2. Chickens come home to roost with guns:
A Pennsylvania Democrat Congress member who backed the “Mental Health Justice Act” to defund the police and replace them with mental health workers got carjacked and robbed at gunpoint in the ensuing Philadelphia crime wave. Thus creating a new category of crime: “karma-jacking.”
Maybe we should send those mental health workers to deal with anyone who thinks defunding the police is a good idea.
3. New Podcast Episode:
On this week's episode, Governor Huckabee shares his reflections on the story of Christmas and chats with former NJ Governor Chris Christie about the future of the GOP, memories from the 2016 campaign trail, and his ever evolving relationship with President Trump.
4. We have survived hard times before:
These last two years have been tough for many people, but Anita in New Mexico reminds us that we have survived hard times before:
“In the 1950's, my stepfather suffered a severe illness. Christmas had always been "light weight", although we didn't know it; there was love to go around and a great dinner.
On Christmas Eve, the doorbell rang and there stood a group of church people, not from our church, with gifts, some wrapped, others were secondhand, but they were new to us!!!! There were more gifts than we had ever seen before, and my mother made sure some went to other homes.
I hadn't experienced such a love of giving before, and it always makes my memories of Christmas special to the point that I enjoy helping where I can and just enjoying the day with my husband with food and remembering exactly what the day is all about.”
Jerry from Florida also shared a memory of a hard time Christmas that was made wonderful by the generosity of others:
“My greatest Christmas was when I was five years old. My mother had taken my brother, sister and myself away from an abusive father, and we were on our own. To say we were poor would be an understatement. My mom rented an old house, and she supported us on a waitress’s wages. She refused to accept welfare and told us that as long as we had each other and love that we would make it. We had our own garden and even as small kids worked to help. We had so very little. Quite often, we had to drink powdered milk and eat bread and gravy three times a day. A hot dog was considered a luxury.
Christmas that year looked bleak. We had no money, but it was the happiest time of my life because we had love. Love of family and neighbors. There was one present for each of us kids that Christmas Eve as we went to bed.
On Christmas morning, we all came down to open our present. An unbelievable sight awaited us. We got to the door of the living room and our eyes widened. There were so many toys and presents that you couldn’t even hardly get in the room. Toy trucks!! Bicycles!!! Our joy and surprise were great.
We lived in a small town…Williamsfield, Illinois. Our neighbors knew we had so little. After us kids had gone to bed on Christmas Eve, the knocks on the door started. People from all over town brought things. That is the type of people I had the honor to grow up with. No government. No welfare. Just neighbors helping neighbors by living the Christian values we were all taught.
I think of that Christmas morning so long ago today and still get a smile and a tear. It was the greatest Christmas I ever had.
My mom went on to remarry to a great guy who adopted us. They worked hard to provide us a better life and live the American Dream. Mom went back to college after we were older and at the age of 38 graduated Summa Cum Laude and taught school for years. Today they live comfortably in retirement.
I think of those days and how poor we were, but I also think of the values instilled in me by a loving mother and a great community. Values that taught us about self-reliance and helping your neighbor. These were the greatest lessons learned from my greatest Christmas.”
Thank you, Anita and Jerry, for that reminder of what a difference it makes to have churches and communities that gather together to help those who are in need. We need that more than ever now, if our politicians would just stop waging war on our churches and communities.
5. AMERICA THE BEAUTIFUL
Images of America's cities, landscapes and people.
6. Angels are watching over us:
Molly from Washington has a story about how the angels are watching over us…and sometimes, they’re not too happy with what they see!
“I remember our Christmases at home. They were magical. Although we didn't have much the rest of the year, my mother would somehow transform our house and our lives into a magical wonderland once a year. There was always snow in Virginia, and there was always Christmas all around the town. Christmas meant that we would be getting our stockings filled with goodies that we rarely, if ever, got throughout the year. We would always have a small handful of nuts, a small handful of hard candies (green and white ribbons were my favorite!) and an orange. What more could you want?
The house was decorated with all of our treasures that we had collected over the years. Mama had a village that lit up and it twinkled on a bed of white snowy cotton. The tree had beautiful lights and all of the ornaments we had made and collected. At the very top of the tree was an angel. She had golden blonde hair and there were clear strands of thin plastic that shot out all around her. When we lit her up every Christmas, it was my favorite moment! She just shimmered and seemed to have an ethereal glow. I always felt like I had just found my long lost friend, and I knew that she would be watching over me. We always had a fresh tree, and the smell would fill the house. It was such a happy time!
It was almost Christmas of 1958. I was 11, and my brother, Jimmy, was 13. It was the first Christmas that I remember us being so excited. We didn't get a lot of presents or toys throughout the year so we always looked forward to getting our one present. This year, I was surprised to see that my brother and I had the exact same box under the tree. It was the same size, same weight, and was wrapped the same. When we shook them, they sounded the same too. There was no sound at all! We were hoping for a rattle or jingle that would give us a clue as to what was inside. Half of the fun was trying to figure out what it could be. We were truly puzzled this year. How could they buy us the same thing? He was a boy and I was a girl. The presents felt like they could have a book inside. I did not want a book for Christmas! I was always an avid reader and I did love books, but I could get them at the library or from a friend. I did not want to find a book under the tree. I decided I would just have to wait and find out.
It was two days before Christmas and my mother and stepfather went into town to do some shopping. That left Jimmy and me there alone. We were sitting there not long after they had driven out of the driveway when Jimmy suddenly had a brainstorm. Why not open the presents and see what we were getting? He was sure he could do it so nobody would know. I told him that I didn't think that was a good idea. We would surely be caught and then it would ruin our holiday. He said he was going to do it anyway. He went to the tree and began to slowly and very gently pull the tape off of one end of the present. I was watching from a distance and when he said he had it nearly open, I couldn't stand it anymore and I ran over to see what was inside. As he pulled back the paper from the end of the package, we both let out a squeal! It was a transistor radio! We were thrilled! We carefully put the tape back and put the present right where it had been.
I looked up and there was the angel staring right at me! I had just committed a great sin and all in her presence. It felt like her eyes were burning into my soul! Oh, if only I could redo the last few minutes! But it was too late. I had sinned and there was no way to change it!
Christmas morning came and everyone went downstairs to begin the celebration. I opened my sock first and popped a piece of candy in my mouth. It was so good. I was so thrilled to get some treats and I always made them last as long as I could. Then it was time to open our present. I ripped mine open and tried to look very surprised and excited. I felt so bad! I felt like a thief and liar. I was feeling so guilty and it felt like I had a 50-pound weight hanging on my back and I could not get rid of it. As I sat there, I looked up at my beautiful angel and I felt her eyes upon me once again. There seemed to be sadness in her eyes. I asked her to please forgive me. I never enjoyed the radio as much as I would have if I had waited until Christmas morning to open it! It was like a constant reminder that I was a liar! As we all gathered around the table to eat our wonderful dinner, I felt my stomach drop and I couldn't eat very much at all. I loved Christmas dinner almost as much as I enjoyed getting a present, but this year, I just couldn't get an appetite.
The following year, I waited until Christmas morning, and I got a nice coat with a fur collar. I was thrilled! My brother suggested peeking again, but I told him that I was never going to do that again! I had learned my lesson, and it was one that would last me a lifetime! I looked up at my angel, and she seemed to be glowing brighter than ever! And she seemed to have a much more peaceful look on her face. I knew then that I was forgiven, and I promised her that I would never peek at presents again!”
Thank you, Molly, for that reminder that it’s not just Santa Claus who’s watching over us to see if we’re naughty or nice.
7. 2021 HUCKABEE NEWSLETTER HOLIDAY ENTERTAINMENT GUIDE:
I’ve never been a fan of political boycotts of entertainment products, which can hurt workers who have nothing to do with the woke views that studio executives or stars spew. But I understand why many conservatives might not want to give their entertainment dollars to people who call them racists and want to put them in reeducation camps.
Still, we all need some entertainment to take our minds off of politics for a while, and to give to like-minded folks on our gift lists.
That’s why, last year, we created a list of entertainment gift options created by people who deserve your support (the original 2020 gift guide is here, and there are many albums, movies, comedy DVDs, downloads and more in it that are still great options for this Christmas).
MAJOR MUSIC STARS WHO BUCKED THE NARRATIVE IN 2021
Rock stars used to brag about being rebels. Now, many are so terrified of being canceled that they don’t dare criticize the Democrat-“led” government or cower before Twitter trolls. Even the “bad boys of rock,” the Rolling Stones, took their classic song “Brown Sugar” out of their set list for fear it might offend somebody. This fear has even infected country music, where there are far more conservative performers. Fortunately, there are a few big names who refuse to be intimidated and still denounce oppression, even when it comes from the left…
Eric Clapton – Old Slowhand ran afoul of the woke brigades when he recorded an anti-lockdown song by Van Morrison, and the attacks intensified after he dared to talk about his near-fatal reaction to the COVID vaccine. Twitter trolls dug up ancient racist comments he made when he was in the depths of drug addiction for which he long ago apologized. He was even attacked as a racist over a lyric about government tyranny that used the word “slave,” as if only black people were ever slaves. They’re trying hard to “cancel” him, but with his massive legacy of great music, they’re like Lilliputians trying to tie down Gulliver with dental floss.
His latest is a stunning new DVD/CD of more unplugged versions of his earlier rock classics called “The Lady in the Balcony: Lockdown Sessions.” The CD is at Amazon here: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09B48SHTK. Here’s a must-see video clip of “After Midnight”: https://youtu.be/MkrA-gSG-vE.
Jason Aldean – The country star is an unapologetic conservative patriot who stood up to threats of being “canceled” and defended his wife after photos circulated of her and their kids wearing anti-Biden shirts. He’s also spoken up for other conservatives in country music who are afraid of expressing their real views. His music is available (at last check!) at all major retailers, and this page has his latest CD and all his other merchandise: https://store.jasonaldean.com/collections/all-products
Kid Rock – The rocker/rapper just released a song called “Don’t Tell Me How To Live” that makes his feelings on government nannies and meddlesome ninnies crystal clear. Here’s a story about it with a link to the song and lyric quotes, but WARNING! He does not censor himself! https://redstate.com/mike_miller/2021/11/20/kid-rocks-new-song-dont-tell-me-how-to-live-might-be-full-of-profanity-but-man-the-patriotism-n479304
Pitbull – The Latin hip-hop superstar is a first-generation Cuban-American who is outspoken in his disdain for communism and love for America. He recently told a concert crowd that if you don’t like the USA, “God bless you, but (BLEEP!) you” and “go back to the countries we (BLEEP!) came from, and you’ll see how much you appreciate the United States of America.” He’s released many hit albums, and you can find them at https://pitbullmusic.com.
Van Morrison – Rock used to be about “rebelling against the Establishment, man,” but lately, it’s been about reinforcing compliance with the Establishment. But Van is still a rebel, and he brought on the wrath of the cancel culture mobs and liberal rock critics by daring to write songs protesting music-killing lockdowns (that raised money for unemployed musicians) and media manipulation of the public. Many classic albums are available, but his newest is “Latest Record Project, Vol. 1.” As with most non-PC entertainment, cowardly critics savaged it while the public loved it. His website is www.vanmorrison.com and his new album is available here: https://vanmorrison.shop.musictoday.com/
None of the artists above have appeared on “Huckabee” (they’re welcome anytime, although Kid Rock and Pitbull might have to watch their vocabularies.) But all the following artists did. Relive some great music moments, and then order some music and support them!
2021 “HUCKABEE” COMEDIANS
Of course, the most renowned fighter against cancel culture in comedy in 2021 was Dave Chappelle with his Netflix special, “The Closer.” While I admire his comic genius and his bravery, I’m afraid his language and subject matter are too raw for most of my audience. But he definitely deserves praise for fighting for free speech.
Fortunately, there are a lot of great comics who work clean and many have appeared on “Huckabee.” Here are the ones who have CDs, DVDs or books for sale. The YouTube clips will refresh your memories and also provide a lot of hilarious samples.
Also, remember to check last year’s edition of the gift guide for many more great comics and musical performers…
Brad Stine: The man known as “God’s Comic” even made us laugh at the coronavirus: https://youtu.be/EF3z1FdKwb8. You can buy or rent his streaming special “Unapologetic” at his website: https://www.bradstine.com
Chonda Pierce: One of my favorite people and one of the funniest in the world, Chonda can also make COVID funny: https://youtu.be/x_hK-7WXFWQ. She has many best-selling stand-up DVDs, books, documentaries and other goodies at her website: https://shop.chonda.org.
Jeremy Nunes: Remember the great comic storyteller who somehow got elected mayor of his small town? https://youtu.be/RTZ31ynpviU. You can find his DVDs, CD and his book “You Can’t Write City Hall” here: https://www.jeremynunes.com/Store
John Branyan – A very funny comic known for his Shakespearean retelling of “The Three Little Pigs,” he taught us the blessing of stupidity: https://youtu.be/Z83UHzc6FOg. His DVDs and books, including his “Three Little Pigs” book, “A Triune Tale of Diminutive Swine,” are here: https://johnbranyan.com/the-store/#!/.
John C. Morgan: Our audience was startled when Donald Trump suddenly turned into George W. Bush, but they were both this amazing impressionist: https://youtu.be/2ayIIJr6Isc. He doesn’t have a comedy album or DVD, but you can get his inspiring book “War On Fear” at https://johncmorgan.com.
Keith Alberstadt: A very clever comic who got some of the biggest laughs ever on our show: https://youtu.be/65wOWDT6DH8. He has several albums available for download on iTunes: http://keithcomedy.com/store.
Kristen Weber: The delightful musician/comic gave us a whole new use for pants: https://youtu.be/xmkAw567zbA. She has several books out that combine humor and faith, including her latest, “Adulting For Jesus: A Book About Purpose, Trusting God, and (Obviously) Burritos:” https://www.kristinweberonline.com.
Rik Roberts: A show favorite who started as our warm-up comic, bossing around our audience as “Barney Fife.” That uncanny impression landed him his first starring movie role in “Mayberry Man” (see movies below.) He’s also known for his comedy songs. Here’s a recent appearance: https://youtu.be/FTiQKNn33-0. His CDs and more are at www.RikRoberts.com.
Taylor Mason: This hilarious comedian/ventriloquist has visited the show twice: https://youtu.be/NgtbhHYkCEI. You can find his DVD, his book and his cute ventriloquist puppets Vinnie the Guinea Pig and Zero the Penguin for your kids, all at https://www.taylormason.com/.
William Lee Martin: The hilarious cowboy storyteller also started the Cowboys Who Care Foundation to provide support and cowboy hats to kids living with cancer and other life-threatening diseases. Here he is on “Huckabee”: https://youtu.be/G98OVQ3xhAg. His latest two DVDs are here: https://www.williamleemartin.com/shop.
8. Prayer Tree:
We are stronger together. Submit your prayer request for HEALTH & HEALING or IN MEMORIAM by visiting my website here.
Our hope is that our newsletter readers and social media followers will consider these prayer requests each day.
HEALTH AND HEALING
"I had major back surgery in September 2021. I’m having some issues with recovery. I’ll appreciate prayer for complete healing so I can return to work after being off all this time. Thank you. Linda H."
"Please pray for our adult son Dan who is experiencing a very tough time dealing with his severe OCD."
"Prayer ???? to be healed of Parkinson’s Disease & Arthritis. Thank you Jesus for loving us so much!!♥?"
"My wife Gayle is trying to get on the transplant list for double lung surgery please pray for her and our family we have set up a go fund me to help with housing and food while we are gone from our home for three months God is our strength above all things thank you for your prayers ????????Bubba Skipper"
O Holy Night
Today's Christmas song is recommended by many, many, many readers.
O Holy night! The stars are brightly shining
It is the night of our dear Savior's birth
Long lay the world in sin and error pining
'Til He appears and the soul felt its worth
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn
Fall on your knees; O hear the Angel voices!
O night divine, O night when Christ was born
O night, O Holy night, O night divine!
Led by the light of Faith serenely beaming
With glowing hearts by His cradle we stand
So led by light of a star sweetly gleaming
Here come the Wise Men from Orient land
The King of kings lay thus in lowly manger
In all our trials born to be our friend
He knows our need, to our weakness is no stranger
Behold your King; before Him lowly bend
Behold your King; before Him lowly bend
Truly He taught us to love one another;
His law is love and His Gospel is Peace
Chains shall He break, for the slave is our brother
And in His name, all oppression shall cease
Sweet hymns of joy in grateful chorus raise we
Let all within us Praise His Holy name
Christ is the Lord; O praise His name forever!
His power and glory evermore proclaim
His power and glory evermore proclaim
If you have a favorite Christmas carol/hymn you want to see in our newsletter, please email [email protected].
10. I Just Wanted To Say:
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