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Monday, December 20, 2010

Has Christmas Become an Idol?

It's the week of Christmas and all through the home, is the patter of feet from a small city gnome. The ribbon is strewn on the floor without care, I find slippers and wonder if his feet are now bare. 
It's windy and dark and really quite cold, I wonder if he'd mind if his slippers were sold?
Maybe I'll keep them for my little boy, though they're not as exciting as a shiny new toy.
Ok yes, I'm just being silly. This has been, bay far, the most relaxing Christmas we have ever had. I do miss some traditions that we didn't partake in this year, but it wasn't because we refused, these things simply weren't here. I see friends all over Facebook talk about huge Christmas events and choirs and our little town didn't have much at all. I think my whole town is somewhat stepping back a bit this Christmas and just taking it easy with their families.

Do I dare say this??? It doesn't even seem like Christmas. We have the tree up, the baked goods being mixed, the house has the aroma of breads and cookies, presents are wrapped, lights are up, but it doesn't seem like Christmas. Maybe all the years before we were just so wrapped up in the outer appearances of Christmas, that maybe we didn't have the down to earth Christmas intact. Has Christmas become an idol to people instead of a season of remembrance of our Lord?
"Christmas cannot be bought. Christmas cannot be created. Christmas cannot be made by hand. Christmas can only be found." -Ann Voskamp
 Sure, there are lots of fun and innovative ways to celebrate Christmas and I think they are all lovely traditions. But even church activities can steal the burning light within us as we scurry off to keep up with the church's status quo of the holiday. I'm not saying all these things are bad, but if we aren't careful they can 'become' bad to us as individuals. I am happy that my many friends have their different ways of celebrating the holiday, but here's what I ask.... for those of us who don't keep up with the church's status quo of Christmas, please don't judge us as scrooges.
You can have a tiny Charlie Brown tree or no tree at all. You can have sugar cookies or Oreos, turkey or ham, or just cereal for dinner if you'd like. All the fancy-shmancy things of the holiday is not what makes the holiday for us. It's the sweet fellowship of family and friends who gather together to remember our Lord and why He gave us relationship with one another. He gives us relationship with each other so we can experience Him in one another as we love one another..As you love others, you are loving Him.
One tradition that we did not think we would be able to do this year, was to host a friend for Christmas. For the last several years, God has allowed us to open our doors and invite someone in to celebrate with us. A special someone. Some years we had a few of them. They were people that we knew, who were down on their luck, without a home or a job and no family to be with. It was the one thing we did not have planned..yet. We honestly, weren't sure God would have us to do this again this year..until...just the other day.. a long lost friend who is homeless came back. ((tears)) 
I am crying tears of joy..not because we get to have this tradition in place again this year..but that Christ has come back to be with us again..through a person who is among the least of these..his brethren..It is one of our brothers..who is one of His brothers..and He lives within him as He lives within us..and we get to serve him and love him this Christmas...in our home. My daughter, who adores this tradition so..said to me.."Now our Christmas is complete".
Christmas is not an idol to us anymore, it's a manifestation of His love for mankind and we get to partake in this fellowship and communion of Christ among one another.

Luke 2:10 "And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people."
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5 kind words:

Marci December 21, 2010 at 7:45 AM  

Beautiful post! We strive to keep the Christ in Christmas, but it can be so hard with all the "stuff" that comes with the season these days.

Anne December 22, 2010 at 12:23 PM  

So true.... I loved Anne's post on Christmas as well... makes you stop and think.

I wanted to stop by and wish you and your family a Very Merry Christmas and I pray that it is filled with lots of Special Memories and Blessings.. ~ God Bless

Anne @ http://lessonsthrulife.com

Mahina December 22, 2010 at 7:31 PM  

Nice post and reminder to love others this Christmas.

Christin February 18, 2011 at 1:12 PM  

I clicked on this because it showed up under today's post as "related" and can I just say THANK YOU and AMEN?!

All the Christmas "traditions" began to really bug me LAST Christmas (2009)...and they didn't let up this Christmas either. In fact, it was only more heavy. My husband and I decided to pare down on the things that simply don't center on Christ - including our Christmas tree. It will be a strange adjustment, I admit. But the fact that we have to continuously remind our children (and ourselves) what Christmas is REALLY about kinda bothers me. Our celebrations should be of HIM and nothing less. We wouldn't need to be reminded if we were actually celebrating HIM and focused on HIM.

OK, I'm done. :O) Thanks for posting this!!

Sisterlisa February 18, 2011 at 1:41 PM  

Christin,
We began removing some Americanized traditions and started with new ones to help break up the ritual and find renewal in the holiday. :)

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