Tis the season of bringing good tidings of great joy! Children look forward to Santa’s visit bringing them delightful gifts. Adults attend parties and buy presents for each other and their families. Homes, stores, businesses, schools, towns, and cities are brimming with holiday decorations, and lights sparkle in an array of colors everywhere you look. In other words, Christmas is upon us! People love the Spirit of the season! They’re a little kinder, more compassionate, and they give a little more generously to those in need. This is the bright side of Christmas and the holidays and I love that loving Spirit!
Unfortunately, there’s also a dark side to Christmas and the holidays. Not everyone looks forward to them for whatever reasons. Some experience depression, may feel alone, and some may have lost loved ones during this time in previous years and it brings up too many sad memories; therefore, it is a very difficult time for many.
It is also the season of fighting and arguing and it can bring out the worst in people. They fight over whose holiday greeting we should use and they get nasty if you don’t say their greeting of choice. They fight over whose decorations should be put up and where. And then there’s the argument that always goes around that there’s a war on Christmas. There is no war on Christmas. If there were, it would be illegal to celebrate Christmas at all. Just look around during this season and everywhere you look, all you see is Christmas! On TV there are countless Christmas movies and TV shows, Christmas commercials, and decorations galore everywhere! Also, there is no law saying you can’t say Merry Christmas.
Christmas has become so commercialized that sometimes I think it should be called ‘Commercialistmas.’ Just look at the way people behave on Black Friday! Many people go into debt buying gifts for their families and friends because they don’t feel they can have a Christmas without presents. And add all that stress!
The Spirit of Christmas is supposed to be about the celebration of the birth of Jesus, the very one who taught us to love one another unconditionally. If we really want to celebrate this holiday, then let’s practice those teachings. Bless and honor other’s holidays and maybe even share them with your friends. Greet people with the same greeting they give you and do so with love and kindness.
I have rarely seen any decorations or mention of any other holidays during this time such as Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Bodhi Day, and so many others, and these deserve to be celebrated as well!
W.C. Jones said, “The joy of brightening other lives, bearing each others’ burdens, easing others’ loads, and supplanting empty hearts and lives with generous gifts, becomes for us the magic of the holidays.”
Wishing everyone a wonderful holiday season (whatever holiday you celebrate) with much love, peace, happiness, prosperity, joy, and magic!
Published in the Cookeville Herald Citizen newspaper December 2, 2016.