Thursday, December 01, 2005

Merry Holiday (you bunch of pagans!)

Yes....that title is written completely in jest. I'm responding here, in that title, and with this post, to the latest onslaught of "Christian" email forwards filling my inbox. Seems there's a giant Christian outcry going on about the use of the word HOLIDAY as opposed to CHRISTMAS.

I'm wondering....which of these things do you think God might be more concerned about?

The use of the word Holiday instead of Christmas....


The fact that most people in today's Christian culture think that the main
reason to believe in Jesus is so that you'll go to heaven when you die.

If it's all about relationship (and it IS) then what in the heck does using the word HOLIDAY really have to do with anything? Yes, I'll grant them, using HOLIDAY instead of CHRISTMAS is a direct reflection of our culture and the times in which we live. But, that's ALL it is. I wish we could put as much time, effort, and energy into things that might really make a difference, to ourselves as well as those around us. Things like studying God's word, praying, and taking time to THINK about how our choices and every response/reaction we have reflects Jesus to those around us.

Questions like...."Why am I here?" "What does God expect me to do?" "Am I doing all I can or am purposed to be doing to further the kingdom?" (and that does not mean I've invited a bunch of people to church, but rather, have I shown people what church looks like in the place where I find them outside that building) "How can I grow spiritually?" "What sort of things (not Bible facts) do my children need to know to become fruitful spiritually?" "Do I have joy and if not, why not?" "Are the fruits of the spirit; love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control evident in me?" (because we all know that the fruit of the spirit's not a kumquat....what? inside joke there for those who like tdub and I who sing with children on sunday mornings)

Just little stuff like that. I'm WAY more concerned about these sorts of things than whether or not the local hardware store or national retail chain uses Christmas or Holiday on their banner out front.


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Robert said...

Hi Grace!

Yes, we are a country that values titles more than any other, including those with crowned heads!

As a ?Primary Education Professional, you know of the importance of descriptive words and phrases. I, as a ?Senior Associate Legal Analyst and Litigation Specialist, appreciate the power that accompanies a nifty-sounding titular designation.

But onto your observation: It is interesting to note another side of the "Christmas" vs. "Holiday" debate. Some (correctly) note that the Christmas holiday itself predates Christianity and was, for many centuries, a celebration to the god Saturn. In these persons' view, the celebration of Christmas is inappropriate because it neither correctly reflects the date of Jesus' birth, nor does it originate from the Christian faith.

Merry Solstice and a Happy Saturnalia to one and all! ;-D

Elizabeth said...

We've always called it Christmas. People need to get over themselves, honestly. It's bloody annoying.

FuelGuyFSD said...

I'm curious to see how many of those who complain about the CHRISTMAS vs HOLIDAY thing have celebrated other cultural holidays like HALLOWEEN.

I heard a preacher say that Christmas is the "most pagan" of the Christian Church year. Most of our current Christmas traditions come from pagan rituals, and the Church invented this holiday to counter the pagan holidays. Everything from the evergreen to the advent wreath can be traced back to pagan rituals (although the shepherds hook/candy cane was decidedly Christian in it's origin).

There are some purists out there who don't celebrate Halloween at all, and read the Advent scriptures every day through the Christmas season. God love 'em.

But please, let the rest of us have our holiday-slash-christmas celebrations, however we see fit.

Anonymous said...

You may use holiday-slash-christmas however anyone would want to use it. But don't except everyone else to do the same. It appears to me that because a minority wants to say Happy Holiday instead of Merry Christmas. Then everyone else should do the same. Retail stores, home inprovement stores, etc. This new American culture stinks all the way to Washington, D.C.