The Christmas Post
December 25, 2012
And so this is Christmas. I can’t remember the rest of the words, and… I really don’t care. I do love Christmas music though. Tunes such as this one especially:
Jingle bells, pastor smells
youth group really stunk
sabbath school made me drool
and pathfinders got drunk, hey!
And this one:
In the meadow we can build a snowman
and pretend that he’s pastor Counsell
he’ll say are you saved and we’ll say, “no man.”
So he’ll tell us that we’re going to hell!
*clears throat* Anyway, lately, I’ve been thinking about the meaning of Christmas.
No, do NOT try to tell me that “Jesus is the reason for the season!”
Erm, no, sorry, he’s not. If you believe that, go read a history book. A real history book, not one that’s been doctored by Christians wishing to paint a more Christianesque picture of history. Christmas is actually very pagan in origin.
Actually, that’s one of the things that annoys me about the Christmas season: commercialism. I’m not just talking about the type of commercialism that convinces you that you should buy your close family member a “nationwide data plan on a 4G network with 0 down” (they just advertised that on TV). No, Christians commercialize the holiday too. They think that this is better, because they don’t commercialize things. However, they commercialize ideas, such that Christmas is all about Jesus.
Which is fine; if you want Christmas to be all about Jesus for you, be my guest. It’s not for me to say that that is wrong. However, I get really annoyed when you try to insist that it be my reason for the season. That it be everyone else’s reason for the season, and then you capitalize on that to proselytize.
That being said, I have no problem with Christians deciding to celebrate Jesus’ birth (although I can just imagine him sighing and saying, “close enough” when asked if it’s really his birthday. Nevermind the fact that he was born in the spring.) I like sacred Christmas songs just as much as the secular. In fact, when I sing Christmas songs and think about what Jesus did, I fight (or not) the urge to cry.
I just have a problem with those Christians who insist that the rest of the world see Christmas the same way.
After all, you don’t often hear about Jews insisting we keep Hanukkah. Or that the Maccabees are the reason for the season.*
So, if Jesus isn’t the meaning of Christmas for you, Abby, what is Christmas all about to you?
Well, I’ll let you know when I figure it out. Maybe there isn’t only one meaning, at least, not all at once. For now, Christmas is about being with my family. However, there will come a time when I will be unable to go to family get togethers, for one reason or another. My family may become too spread out. I might be traveling too much. Or, something.
My family didn’t celebrate Christmas today. We’re celebrating tomorrow. My cousin hates Christmas. I think I’m the only one in my “family” (grandma, me, cousin, yes we did live together a lot at one point, so we are a family) who loves Christmas.
Sure, it brings out the worst in some people; people getting upset when I wish them happy holidays instead of Merry Christmas (well, not everybody celebrates Christmas) or Merry Christmas instead of happy holidays (because hey, it’s december 24/25/whatever). People (*coughmaybeincludingmecough*) getting way too obsessed over presents (to the point of using pepper spray in the store on black friday, not even *I* am that bad).
But it can also bring out the best in people. It was on the news the other day: this woman bought gift cards at a coffee house and started handing them out to the next 26 people to come through line in memory of the children who died in Sandy. People who buy presents not because they feel they have to, but because they truly want to. People making sure that everyone they know has a place to go for Christmas dinner (including homeless people.) People getting generous, because that’s what the real spirit of Christmas is all about: generosity. Even if a person doesn’t have much money, they can give time. My grandma bakes cookies for everyone. This does cost some money, yes, however, anyone who’s ever baked before will tell you that it costs you more in time, at least if you’re making from scratch.
Jesus gives himself. Santa Claus gives presents. I give things I don’t talk about in public.** Family members take time to spend with each other (sometimes.)
We all have something to give. I guess, really, that’s what Christmas is all about.
*To any Jews who might possibly be reading this, I apologize if I get it wrong… me=not literate in Jewish traditions; they don’t teach this sort of thing at SDA schools.
**that sounds really wrong now that I’m re reading it. Oh well. You non sick twisted perverts will know what I mean; if I give anything to charity, I don’t talk about it. Or at least, I talk about it with very few people.