Continued from Part 1 Life Is Tough for George Bailey
Comes WW II and once again George is left behind the action because he can’t enlist due to his bad ear and his brother Harry becomes a Navy fighter pilot and a war hero. He is awarded the Medal of Honor. Bedford Falls gets ready to welcome him home with a big celebration.
Here we come to the most meaningful of messages that has to do with humanity and being willing to help people and doing everything for others. Comes around another Christmas Eve and poor old flustered Uncle Billy goes to the bank to make a deposit for the Building and Loan of $8,000. There he confronts mean old man Potter and makes him aware of the fact that Harry is a war hero and that the Bailey family has lots to be proud of. When he hands back the newspaper to Potter he has left the envelope with the company’s money folded up in the newspaper. Potter who is wheelchair bound rolls into his office at the bank and makes the discovery. Here it is possible to have a vision of Potter being Scrooge and the devil all rolled into one. He doesn’t return the money knowing that in doing so it will result in bankruptcy for the Building and Loan and criminal charges for George. The old man is delighted.
It finally leads George to take out his frustration toward his family and on this Christmas Eve to drive off into the night with his life insurance policy which to him means he is worth more dead than alive. It leads him to get drunk, crashing his car against an oak tree and winding up on a bridge over a river. In steps Clarence. They strike up a bargain – the angel will help George understand how terrible things could have been if he had never been born and in turn, George will give Clarence the possibility to earn his wings. George becomes nobody in a quick flash of thunder but doesn’t realize that this is true now a reality. Knowing what we know about George’s life he now discovers that:
- Without him, in this life, his brother Harry drowned in that icy lake long ago.
- The druggist Mr. Gower did make that huge mistake, the child died and since then he has become a lonely, miserable, alcoholic whom everyone makes fun of.
- Uncle Billy lost it when the Building and Loan went under and wound up in an asylum.
- His mother old and lonely runs a boarding house
- His wife Mary with no George in this world has become an old spinster working in the library.
- George’s project for decent housing for the working poor is a cemetery.
- Bedford Falls has become Pottersville with dance halls, bars and gambling halls.
All of this has occurred because George Bailey was never born. When George sees what Potter did to the town he starts thinking. It finally brings George to his senses realizing how many people he has helped and influenced in his life and he begs to be alive once more. When it comes to pass he joyfully runs through Bedford Falls on Christmas Eve to his home and children. At his house, the law is already waiting to arrest him. His wife Mary arrives home with joyful news that everyone cares about and loves George just as much as he cares about and loves everyone equally. They all surround him and have thrown money together to bail George out of his unpleasant situation.
A telegram arrives from London from his best friend who is wiring a further $20,000. A joyous Christmas indeed all because George was born and finally a bell tinkles on the Christmas tree and George’s youngest daughter knows to announce that an angel has just gotten wings. With all this love and caring going on it is sad to think that Potter never did return the money and must have been so angry that everything worked out so well but then there are too many people like that in this world.
Have you ever thought about how many lives you touch, about how many people depend on you, and care about you and especially how very different this world would be if you had never been born. Let’s make this a Christmas of caring, sharing, giving and loving.