I made it through the weekend without visiting a single shopping center, though I did my share of online browsing.
Call me hard to please, but I just can’t find anything that stands out this year. I love to give gifts that mean something, rather than giving a gift just to be giving something.
And expect a post later this week about the ills of the ever-growing commercialization of Christmas.
Here is but a preview: I have friends who are atheists but who still put up Christmas trees and exchange gifts. While it is their right to do what they please, their rituals are starting to offend me more and more each year.
Why on Earth would you erect a Christmas tree and exchange gifts during the holiest of Christian holidays if you don’t even believe in Christ?
I don’t light a menorah; I’m not Jewish.
Perhaps it is because trees and gifts are the more secular celebrations of our Christian event. Christians erect trees and give gifts to celebrate the birth of Jesus, while others do it because of sales and Santa Claus. That’s what they believe this time of year is all about.
I grew up in a very Christian family, and we always had Santa and gifts galore. But the notion of Christ wasn’t lost on me, and I knew that the baby Jesus in the manger meant something special.
I worry today that too many children think that Christmas is just about Xboxes and Nintendo Wii.
No longer — and, frankly, for most of our modern existence — does Christmas really symbolize the birth of Christ. It symbolizes Black Fridays and Black Mondays, where retailers offer an orgy of cheap goods at cheap prices.
Admittedly I have for many years participated in this ritualistic display of shopping and eating, but the true meaning of the season was always there in my heart.
It seems as I grow older I become a more spiritual person, and growing through the Lord is what it’s all about. This year, I’m shifting the focus from gifts and trying to honor the man who was born and who died for each and every one of us, whether we choose to believe it or not.
I guess my preview turned out to be pretty much all I had to say on this topic. So, I will let it rest for now. Thanks for listening.
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