Getting the real essence from the commercialized birthday of our Lord
There are many things that baffle me about the human race – but a particular one never ceases to amaze me anytime. It is Christmas, the purported birthday of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ who came to this world to give us hope and paid the maximum price for our redemption. What baffles me about Christmas is not in Christ’s coming in itself because I fully understand why he had to come but the way we celebrate it. I have never hidden the fact that I don’t believe that his birthday is not December 25 though I won’t start a campaign to prove that as the date is not a route to salvation. Knowing him is more important than starting a theological war that might never be won. But what amazes me is that the World celebrates Christmas every year with the greatest percentage not even understanding the principal of the subject – Christ himself.
I become so emotional when people prepare so much for the celebration all over the world with glamor and fanfare. Some even borrow money to go for vacations and the period is always synonymous with a lot of spending. Financial experts at this period are always advising people to take it easy on their spending and try to remember that there is a new year approaching steadily. My emotional outburst is not only tied to the fact that a lot of unnecessary spending spree occurs but that the main lesson of Christ’s coming and its import is eroding per year. In Europe and America; the shopping frenzy at this point is unparalleled and most people tie Xmas to vacations, snows, Santa and feasts which are very good but is that the main essence of Christmas? I say no.
The pace might be slower this year due to the World economic crunch which is not about to end. The government of Las Vegas in the United States is very unhappy because the state boasts of very big tourist earning every December but this year might not be as profitable as the previous years. I also notice that film makers release Xmas films each year but the themes of those films range from passionate romantic to even absurd fairy tales which promotes other gods!
I think we can start re-assessing the way we celebrate Xmas by looking at the following –
1. Broadcast the Real Essence
While it is great to have a well deserved break as well as feasts and fun at Christmas; it is important to let people understand the real reason we celebrate Jesus Christ. I am looking forward to spending many of this season with my wife and kids in the years to come. I have decided to ensure they realize the reason for the season and take the other activities as perks and not the main thing. Parents will do well to let their wards get the message right from when they are very small instead of them growing up thinking that Father Xmas or Santa is the real figure to celebrate.
2. Make him happy
Yeah. I wonder if my father will be happy if we celebrate his birthday for him without being good children to him. Good children as in being obedient, showing him care and love. Isn’t it amusing when people become so drunk on Christmas day and they think they are celebrating Christmas? I wonder how Christ feels looking at the warped idea of celebrating him that the World has adopted.
3. Make others happy
Christ came into this world to give us salvation and rescue us from eternal damnation. This means that this season should be a time of sacrifice for others especially the downtrodden in our society. It should be a period when you put others first and give to the poor. I also guess that before you spend so lavishly on expensive Christmas shopping, vacation and feasts – shouldn’t some percentage go to the needy? I guess it is an individual question.
4. A time to spread the good news
What better season than now to tell people about Jesus Christ. We will be doing ourselves a favour by carrying out our Lord’s instruction about the great commission. These days; it is getting harder to preach because everyone finds it fashionable to claim ‘born again’. The message in this season is a refreshing one and can be shared with anybody regardless of status and religious inclination. We will only have to be diligent and dig into his word so we can personally review our knowledge of the reason he came into this world.
5. Knowing the essence prepares you for the next year
A very important thing that most of us fail to notice is the proximity of Christmas time to the end of the year and the beginning of another. If we decide to be closer to God and be still at this period; we have the advantage of listening better to his review of our year and the eventual downloading of his plans for us in the new year. Most people are so bothered about the things that don’t matter and are so excited and jumpy that they miss the message for the new year. Those who will impact their world in 2009 recognize this fact and are willing to have peace and stillness.
All said – I wish you all a wonderful Xmas celebration and I pray that God himself will reveal his heart to us as we approach 2009. I also pray that he will make us see the reasons to be closer to him and not follow the world into oblivion. Amen.
NB: I know most of us are privy to the shame that was meted out to the supposedly most powerful man on earth – the President of the United States of America – George W. Bush. I will soon write an expose on his tenure and the lessons learned from this man from a very powerful dynasty in America. Meanwhile – I hope you are enjoying the Mentoring/Career Coaching series. Many more to come. Cheers.