Monday, November 28, 2005

Who Took Christ out of Christmas?

It's on the news nightly these days - reports of retailers attempting to celebrate the holidays in a politically correct manner. This means no wishing anyone a Merry Christmas - "Happy Holidays" is the sentiment of choice these days. If at all possible, red and green should not be worn in combination with each other during December. Even jewelry needs to be holiday-neutral.

"They've taken Christ out of Christmas!" outraged Christians everywhere exclaim. But can we really blame this on the secular world? How can we expect those who do not keep Christ in their hearts to keep Him in their holiday?

How long have we as believers straddled the holiday fence ourselves? On one hand, we've succumbed en masse to the materialistic cesspool that has become "Christmas." We stand in line, pushing and shoving with the best of them. We overspend and overeat. We over plan and end up just as stressed as everyone else. On the other, we want Christ-honoring Christmas programs, and Christmas carols. We want to drop our extra change in the Salvation Army kettles, and invite unsaved relatives to church. We want our nativity scenes and advent wreaths. Can we have it all?

Maybe we need to take the Christmas out of Christ. Perhaps somehow we can return to a simple celebration of His coming? Maybe He'd be honored by simple gifts of our hearts . . . a humble and contrite spirit . . . our time . . . our worship.

Let the retailers and politicians have their Christ-less holiday. For me, Christ is not found in Christmas carols or two significant colors or meaningless sentiments. Christ is in my heart and it's in my heart I want to celebrate Him. No one can take that away!

P.S. Do yourself a favor and check out some of Martha's ponderings on the Advent season.

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