Hope you're caroling your way thru your day for all the seasonal reasons! It's gonna be awesome! From what I heard, "…Sunshine returns today with high temperatures slowly warming into the upper 40s…Tomorrow, mostly sunny skies will continue with highs continuing to warm into the middle to upper 50s!"
So, I just hope you're having the "merriest of Decembers!" And while I'm at it, "Winter Greetings!
That doesn't quite do it, does it?
I guess I was just thinking about what they say on TV commercials anymore at Christmastime. We were watching a ballgame the other day and the ads were encouraging us to buy a new car to "make this the best December ever!"…or to shop at their "Winter Event!" One even wished us "Happy Honda Days!"
"Hey! Let's just put our name where His used to be!" Bam!
It seems crazy that many business and marketing folks hesitate to wish us a cheery "Merry Christmas!" anymore. Even tho' "79% of Americans think Christmas should be about Jesus" and "73% of 'Nones' (those who don't have any religious beliefs or faith) think songs about Jesus should be sung at school Christmas programs", lots of retailers just don't want to say "Merry Christmas" in their ads.
But, if you think about it, I guess it makes sense.
I mean, since Jesus was born into poverty, grew to have "no place to lay His head", and said that we must "be on your guard against all kinds of greed!" because our life "doesn't consist in an abundance of possessions", if I was just trying to get people to buy more stuff, His would be the last name I'd want associated with that!
On the other hand, if it's just about celebrating a "December to remember" or a "Winter event", it seems like you couldn't find a worst time to buy a new car! In December that new auto is a lot more likely to slide on sleety, slippery streets into a fire hydrant or get slush all slopped up on it from the other cars sloshing by!
Maybe one year, they'll just try to get us to forget what holiday, month or season of the year it is, and simply say, "Buy stuff!"
This is a little random, but the other day, I was listening to a Bing Crosby Christmas record and I heard that warm, sweet voice sing these words about the "faith of our fathers" and how they lived with all their heart for Jesus, not just at Christmastime, but always…
Check these words...
"Our fathers, chained in prisons dark,
Were still in heart and conscience free.
How sweet would be their children's fate
If they, like them, could die for Thee!
Faith of our fathers, holy faith!
We will be true to Thee till death!"
That's what I call a Christmas carol! It was recorded for the album, "White Christmas" in 1945.
Why does it seem like three hundred years ago?
But maybe in some ways, it's healthier this way. Maybe it's better if some just say, "Happy holidays". Maybe it's better for them, spiritually.
"Christmas" is a Latin word. It comes from the word "Christus" (which means Jesus is the coming King of all), together with the word "messa" or "sending", which comes from the word, "mittere", which means "to send" (like in "emit" or "transmit"). "Messa" is where we get the word "mission". Christmas is "the mission of Christ to our world".
Maybe it's best that wishes of true Christmas joy and cheer are spoken only by those who love Him whose mission into poverty and suffering and whose rising from that tomb, alive from the dead has filled their hearts with gladness and merriment!
Maybe if more folks who still haven't come to believe in Him and love Him, made less wishes of merry remembrance of things that really have no place yet in their hearts, they would be more likely to stop and think…
"It's the end of December. They called it a 'December to remember'. I have new perfume and new jewelry, new clubs, and a new car. Yet, I'm not happy… Hmmm…I wonder what's missing in my life and heart?"
"A merry Christmas, uncle! God save you!” cried a cheerful voice. It was the voice of Scrooge’s nephew…
“Bah!” said Scrooge, “Humbug!”…
“Christmas a humbug, uncle!” said Scrooge’s nephew. “You don’t mean that, I am sure?"
“I do,” said Scrooge. “…Merry Christmas! Out upon merry Christmas! What’s Christmas time to you but a time for paying bills without money; a time for finding yourself a year older, but not an hour richer?… Much good it has ever done you!”
“There are many things from which I might have derived good, by which I have not profited, I dare say,” returned the nephew. “Christmas among the rest. But I am sure I have always thought of Christmas time, when it has come round—apart from the veneration due to its sacred name and origin, if anything belonging to it can be apart from that—as a good time; a kind, forgiving, charitable, pleasant time; the only time I know of, in the long calendar of the year, when men and women seem by one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely, and to think of people below them as if they really were fellow-passengers to the grave, and not another race of creatures bound on other journeys. And therefore, uncle, though it has never put a scrap of gold or silver in my pocket, I believe that it has done me good, and will do me good; and I say, God bless it!…I am sorry, with all my heart, to find you so resolute….But I’ll keep my Christmas humour to the last. So A Merry Christmas, uncle!”
And a Merry Christmas to you!