Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving. Ours was great! We had a houseful of family, an abundance of delicious food and plenty to be thankful for this year. God has again bestowed blessing upon blessing on our family. Certainly there’s been some setbacks and trials, but with God’s help we’ve managed to come through adversity relatively unscathed and a bit wiser for the experience.
Now that Thanksgiving is behind us we begin preparing for Christma$. Today, ‘Black Friday’, one of the busiest shopping days in the United States used to marks the official beginning of the Christma$ season. Businesses used the first day after Thanksgiving as the gauge to begin their Christma$ decorations and ads to entice shoppers. The last few years however they haven’t even waited until Black Friday. Impatience and greed has bumped up the start date. In many stores Christma$ gear has started appearing the day after Halloween. Why not? An extra 30 days of Christma$ shopping is good for business. And after all, isn’t that’s what it’s all about? Shopping, looking for bargains, impulse buying, spending money? You bet it is!
Sadly, a money hungry, corporate America has transformed the true meaning of Christma$ into a greed driven, commercialized nightmare! And we, the good little sheep that we are, have fallen victim to this corporate gift buying conspiracy. The economy may be crumbling around us, but so what! It’s Christma$ let’s spend, spend spend! Don’t get me wrong, there is absolutely nothing wrong with giving gifts, even the 3 wise men brought gifts for the baby Jesus. Gift giving is an expression of love and consideration, If you’re buying gifts because you know it will make someone happy, that’s wonderful, but many people buy gifts to impress others. They aren’t really expressing care for the person, but selfishly satisfying their own ego or hoping that they may get something in return. “It’s better to give than to receive” is a very noble ideal, but many gift givers have ulterior motives.
Hey, I’m not trying to be judgmental here, I’m no saint. Years ago I got caught up in the whole impress others BS and purchase gifts for the wrong reason, hoping that the grandness of the gift might put me in a better light with the person, but I was a whole lot younger then, I’m wiser than that now. Sure I give gifts, but I do it for the right reason, because I want to, because I care.
Face it, Christma$ is big business. I say it’s time for more Americans to realize the money trap they’ve fallen into. Corporate America has us right where they want us. This so called “Christma$ economy overshadows the true meaning of this all important holy day. While true Christians honor this four week period as a time of preparation for the birth of Christ, corporations see only dollar signs and will do all they can to suck us into the gift buying trap. I say it’s time we stop playing into the hands of corporate America and put “Christ” back in Christmas.
The true meaning of Christmas is love. How we show our love, caring and concern is up to each of us. Gift giving can certainly be a part of showing our love but should not be the focal point. God showed us his love by giving us the ultimate gift, His only Son. We cannot forget Christ at Christmas, by doing so we miss the whole point. So how do we keep Christ in Christmas? By doing something for someone else, family, friends and those we don’t even know. A good deed goes a long way. The Christmas season serves as a reminder of how we should be all year long. We are suppose to be caring and loving for others all the time, not just during Christmas.
Try experiencing Christmas in a special way this year. Invite Christ into your heart and your Christmas will be “merry.” You will receive the best gift ever and be filled with an inner peace and joy that only Jesus can bring. A gift that will remain with you throughout the year as you rely on God for all your needs to be met. Tis the season – for a reason! and that reason is Jesus.
Make a difference, put Christ back into Christmas. “Try it, you’ll like it!”