This keeps weighing on me and I finally have to say something. This phrase, the internet memes, the signs, the biting blogs – they make my heart sink, though likely not for the reasons you may think.
I don’t know about you, but Christ IS in our Christmas. He’s also in our Thanksgiving, our Easter, our Sundays, and every other day of the week. He’s in there because we put Him in there. You see, other people can’t put Christ in our Christmas. You can’t put Him in mine and I can’t put Him in yours. And you know how to ensure that He’s NOT in Christmas?
- By yelling at people who say Happy Holidays (come on, people, it’s a pleasant greeting, accept that someone took time to wish you something nice and move on).
- By posting nasty, judgmental memes (seriously, do you feel like that shows the love of Christianity?)
- By acting trite.
If you want to put Christ back in Christmas, thank people for wishing you well. Donate your time to feeding, clothing, and housing the poor. Counsel those struggling with their faith. Bring a hot meal to someone in need. Read your Bible. Observe Advent. Read Matthew (or any of the rest of the Gospel. Or the New Testament. Or the prophesies in the OT.). Pray. Speak your true testimony to someone that needs to hear it. Forgive the people you haven’t forgiven yet. Extend mercy to the person who cut you off by not hanging out the window yelling. Love others that you deem unworthy of love. Call Social Services and ask if you can sponsor a foster family for Christmas. Examine your heart to see where it is hardened.
Notice that none of these things are things that other people need to do. They are all things that start in our home; things that we need to do. No one is taking Christ out of your Christmas without your permission. If your Christmas is too materialistic, it’s no one’s fault but the one that bought into it by getting all the things (us).
Start new traditions. Carry on old ones. Love others. Care for them. Lift them up. Hand out blessing bags. Offer empty space (or even crowded space) in your home to someone in need. Serve a hot meal. Do Random Acts of Kindness. Go caroling. Be patient.
Yelling that Christ isn’t in Christmas doesn’t bring people to Christ, it pushes them away. Don’t complain about the bad, participate in good.
I genuinely think it’s just that simple.