Early to mid October always seems to usher in two things. The first is peoples obsession with anything Pumpkin Spiced flavor. Seriously everyone, calm down. You burn your mouth once on a PSL and you'll rethink how delicious they are when you feel hot, burning rage on your tongue. The second thing to happen is the start of Christmas decorations popping up in large stores which seems to bring a different kind of hot, burning rage to some. This always baffles me.
You know the type of rage I am talking about. Christmas haters saying things like....
"And so it begins..." (Insert photo of Christmas decorations at Target). This is usually followed by a million comments on how it's too early...blah blah blah.
"It's not even Halloween...."
"What happened to Thanksgiving..."
"I can't listen to Christmas music until after Thanksgiving...."
And so on. Lots of snarky complaining and eye rolls. But here is my response...
AREN'T WE CELEBRATING THE SAVIOR OF THE WORLD COMING INTO THE WORLD? WHY THE CRAP WOULD WE WANT TO LIMIT THAT CELEBRATION? DON'T WE CELEBRATE THAT ALL THE TIME? WITH OUR LIVES?
Okay, calm down T.J.... <caps lock off.>
Christians can sometimes be the grumpiest, most negative people in the world and it's so frustrating. We currently live in a societal enviornment where God is being removed. You can't pray in school, you can't say God Bless America, let's take "one nation under God" out of the pledge, and so on. BUT! Here we have a holiday, the biggest holiday at our disposal to proclaim the good news of a savior and WE ARE COMPLAINING ABOUT HOW EARLY IT STARTS?
WHAT THE HECK PEOPLE?
Why not use it? Why not use the fact that Christmas starts earlier and earlier to proclaim the saving grace of Jesus! Yeah, I know that it is commercialized and all that stuff, but I think people can start with a commericalized holiday and end with Jesus. I believe people can start with buying gifts for others and end with the gift Jesus bought for us. I totally believe people can start with receiving gifts from others and end with receiving life from Christ.
Christians, wake up! We have the opportunity to use the biggest holiday on the planet to proclaim the coming of the King of Kings and we are often too busy complaining. Gah! Let's celebrate the birth of Jesus whenever we can and however we can. Let's use Joy to the World playing in Target as we walk the aisles as an opportunity to praise His Holy name! Let's use gifts, candy canes, stockings, trees, lights and parties as a starting point that will end with the lives of our friends, family and strangers being saved by grace! Let's use standing in that dark, cold Black Friday line as an opportunity to talk to the people in front and behind us about Jesus. (That's seriously a great idea, because there is no way those people are getting out of that line.)
Stop complaining and start using all things Christmas to point to all things Jesus!
And while we are at it. Let's start using all holidays as a launching point for procaliming the power of saving grace.
Let's use Halloween to talk about the darkness of the world and the light of Jesus.
Let's use Thanksgiving to talk about the ultimate thing to be thankful for - grace.
Let's use New Year's Eve and day to talk about starting fresh when you give your heart to Christ.
Let's use Valentines Day to talk about how we can only start to be truly loved when we let Jesus take control.
Let's use Flag day to declare that the banner or flag over us is love.
Let's use Arbor day to talk about how He is the vine and we are the branches.
The list can, and does, go on and on and on. Because God can use anything to proclaim His glory! ANYTHING! SO LET'S START USING EVERYTHING AND LET'S START WITH CHRISTMAS COMING EARLY THIS YEAR! <caps lock forever!!!!!!>