I tell people, “Happy Holidays.” Does that make me any less of a Christian? I don’t think it does, but apparently some people do. As we approach the holiday season, I am bracing myself for the onslaught of “Keep Christ in Christmas” slogans on facebook. I decided to make a preemptive strike, and created this picture.
It seems to have struck a chord. Maybe I’m not the only one that is tired of the righteous indignation of people that think that there is a war on Christmas because a department store puts up a sign that says “Happy Holidays.”
Believe me, I want to keep Christ in Christmas, but I’m not looking for Christ at JC Penny or Kohls. If I want to find Christ in Christmas I will look to a local food pantry or a wardrobe ministry. I will look to a homeless shelter or domestic abuse shelter. If I want to find Christ in Christmas I will go to worship with my brothers and sisters in Christ. I will sing the songs of the ages, and proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ to the world. I will invite my neighbor to worship with me, or I will read the Bible and pray.
Nothing can keep Christ out of Christmas if I endeavor to be the body of Christ this Christmas. So please, spare me the “war on Christmas” rhetoric.
Do you want to know who is waging a war on Christmas? Do you want to know who is spoiling the birth of Christ? It is not the people that have the gall to greet you with “Happy Holidays.” The ones waging a war on Christmas are those that think greed and discrimination are Christian values. They are the ones that think that performance fleece, ipads, diamond earrings, and flatscreens have anything to do with the birth of Jesus Christ.
And before I get too carried away with this rant, let me pause for confession. I know that I can get caught up in the consumerism of it all. I enjoy buying presents for my family and my daughter. I enjoy receiving presents, and am already thinking about “What I want for Christmas.” I know that I will enjoy a holiday in a warm home with plenty of food, and a few gadgets that I certainly don’t need. But I’m going to try.
I’m going to try and live simpler. I’m going to try and seek the true gift of Christmas – the peace of Jesus Christ. I am going to pray more. I am going to read more. I’m going to give a little more. I’m going to sin, but I’m also going to forgive. My economic gain or lower prices will come at the cost of another, but I’m also going to do justice. I’m going to be selfish but I’m also going to show mercy. I’m going to be very happy if this little picture catches on and goes viral, but I’m also going to try and walk humbly with my God.
I’m going to do all of those things because that, I think, is the true meaning of Christmas.
On twitter use #BeChristThisChristmas to share how you are working for the Kingdom of God this Christmas season.