When our youngest was about three, she tried to hurry her procrastinating sister along, and then announced that she better get going, “Or Mummy will ‘had it.’”
Now, I’m a very happy, gentle, mellow person…most of the time. But the moment my family hears me say, “Okay, I’ve had it,” everyone dives for cover.
So yes, I was happy with this Christmas season until I heard a preacher use the Isaiah text and tell us how we all should be during Advent: Depressed.
And then, yes, I had it.
Here’s what’s really wrong with some of the Christmas bashers and naysayers.
We’re not in Old Testament times. Jesus’ birth and resurrection took care of all that doom and gloom. We’re supposed to spread his light, not play woe is me, like the prophets of way back, and be all depressed until December 25. (And then be depressed again after December 25 because your Christmas present didn’t live up to your expectations.) Jesus came and dispelled that darkness. So let’s not go back and pretend to play spiritual Bible times. Please.
And don’t keep harping about doing away with all the glitz and tinsel. I love all that sparkle and light. I love the decorations. I have boxes of decorations…many boxes…forty to sixty boxes of them! To be clear, they contain love gifts from our many family members, friends, and church members. As we open each box, unwrap each ornament or decoration, we remember the fun times we’ve had through the years.
I love the lights. They spread joy. (Unless, of course, you can’t afford the high electric bill). Otherwise, why should Christians have unlit depressing homes at Christmas? Lights should remind us of Jesus the Light of the World—the Dispeller of darkness.
Presents? They don’t have to be hugely expensive—just give what you can. Sometimes, we’ve given coupons to each other for a back massage, manicure, movie night, homemade dinner, picnic, or to take out the trash, do the dishes, or provide a guilt-free gripe session, etc. And it’s so much fun. Presents are just a way of saying, “I love you—you’re important to me.” Gifts don’t have to cost money if you don’t have any. They just require a little creativity.
Keep it simple—gifts, sermons, church activities! Plan ahead.
Christmas celebrations have to do with your attitude and heartitude. You can take all the extra stuff away from the stable and focus only on Jesus, but you can still have something distract you from the Reason for the season.
Think about this. You can be completely focused on Jesus this season, but if you’re an unhappy and grousing person, you’re going to take that person with you everywhere you go. How about changing that?
So if we really want to celebrate the birth of Jesus, let’s go all out and make it the best birthday party, with the best decorations, ever. It is his birthday we’re celebrating, after all. If we don’t like dull birthdays for ourselves, why in the world would he?
Pastor's Wife 2020 is actively involved in all aspects of ministry in the church. A writer and editor, she received her Honours Degree in political science, with minors in English Literature, Philosophy, and History. She also works with social media. Follow her at @pastorswife2020.