Friday, December 17, 2010

What About the Whole Year?

Ordinarily, I love cliches – those well worn sayings that sound so trite and annoying. (Rose-colored lenses, anyone?) However, there are a couple of cliches that are getting on my nerves and I hear them and see them a lot this time of year:

Putting the “Christ” back in Christmas.
Jesus is the reason for the season.

The question I ask is: The season? What about the whole year? I guess my real problem with these statements is that I don't see people's actions matching the sentiments behind them. All sarcasm aside, what exactly do these mean? Because quite frankly, they sound like marketing slogans. Let's start with the first one. What does it mean to put the “Christ” back in Christmas? If decorating an evergreen tree, fighting the retail shopping madness, and sending Christmas cards are examples of what it means to put the Christ in Christmas, then I think Christians have a problem. And I say this as a Christian with a decorated, albeit artificial, Christmas tree in my home.

The next one: what does it mean to say that Jesus is the reason for the season? For me, the problem with this one is that I am bombarded with conflicting images: Santa Claus, presents, Christmas trees. Even the nativity displays seem like one more holiday decoration. The cynic in me says that the reason for the season is to boost retail sales. If Jesus truly is the reason for the season, how do Christians show the world this truth? There is no where in the Bible that says Christians are obligated to celebrate Christmas. Yet, out of tradition, we do. There is nothing wrong with tradition as long as tradition does not become a substitute for our relationship with God.

This holy season is about the birth of God's plan of salvation. It is about Immanuel. God with us. Christmas is about the best gift that was ever given...from God to us. In my opinion, we should celebrate this now and the rest of the year, by doing what Jesus asked his followers to do: Love your neighbor as yourself. May the peace and love of Christ be with you now and always. Merry Christmas!!

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16)

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...