As a Christian we all know that the Christ child was not born in December. More than likely late summer, or early fall. The Catholic church were trying to pull people away from the paganism of the Winter Solstice, so the church changed things up a bit to bring the flock back into the church and away from the debauchery of what the people were into, at least this is what we have read and have been told. According to Bible.org, we should go ahead and celebrate Christmas as we do, however more focus on Christ as the Savior of the world.
In a article from Forbes a few years ago, the National Retail Federation found that 41% of Americans already began their holiday shopping before Halloween. So when is the right time? What started the term Black Friday? The term actually started in the 1950’s in Philly when the Army/Navy football game would play. Too many people in town, not enough police caused havoc and bedlam, and the cops had to work and they wanted to go to the game. The term made its now famous after Thanksgiving in 1961 and as recent of 1985 the term wasn’t even used nationwide. But it seems this would be the official first day of the actual Christmas buying season. I mean check the newspaper on Thanksgiving. Its the only paper we buy during the year, just to look at all the ads and to swear were not going out early in the morning and fight the craziness of it all.
So lets go back to Bible.org and look at what they say about the tree and presents.
- The evergreen tree is a symbol of the eternal life which Christ, the Son of God, offers to man via another tree, the cross (Rev. 2:7; 22:2, 14).
- The presents under the tree can remind us of God’s gift and our need to give of ourselves to others as those who have received God’s gift of life through Christ.
Maybe we should really try to follow this lead. It could make us feel better about the ‘Jesus’ part of the season and why as Christians that we celebrate! And what about company and office parties? The ones i attended in the past were not really about Christmas as all. Bible.org says this about the worldly celebration:
Scripture does, however, set down principles which should affect the way we celebrate it. These principles warn and protect us from the distortions we find in the world.
- Today in many companies and offices, Christmas is celebrated with wild, drunken parties where there is no regard for the reason for the season–the birth of the Savior of the World. It becomes just a time of merriment and a time to tie one on.
- Today people often spend lavishly on gifts and go deeply in debt. They buy things they can’t afford, which nobody needs, and sometimes can’t even identify. The response is “Hey, thanks. What is it?”
- Children get caught up with the gifts and the toys and lose sight of the Savior–or never hear about the Lord as God’s gift of His Son that we might have life.
- Through the Christmas message, Parents often fail to teach the spirit of giving as an outworking of one’s relationship with God through faith in Christ, God’s gift to the world.
- Finally, some may observe the season as they would observe lent, as a religious holy day that must be observed to gain points with God, or to become more spiritual.
But it doesn’t have to be like this. Even the gift aspect can be done in such a way that it is instructive, meaningful, in keeping with one’s budget, and in keeping with biblical teaching concerning Christian stewardship.
Yea I know, lots to take in and think about, even pray about. The saying, ‘Keep Christ in Christmas’, can happen if we practice it. Have a wonderful and blessed Christmas season.