It’s Christmas Eve 2009, and as I work in the kitchen, I’ve had the TV on. I can’t help being amused and a little irritated at the efforts by the media to keep from saying the word “Christmas.” A few days ago I heard a morning talk show host talking about “the spirit of the Holiday,” and I thought, what holiday? Columbus Day? Labor Day? I’m sometimes a little dense, but I need her to be more specific. I didn’t know a season of days could actually have a spirit.
Then today, as I’m watching HGTV, I see a man decorating a house for “The Holiday.” He puts up the tree, decorates the tables, and hangs things on the wall, very carefully avoiding the word Christmas. And he shows us how he painted big letters to hang on the wall, spelling out the word “H-o-l-i-d-a-
y.” Really? Are we really celebrating a holiday called Holiday?
It makes me wonder what people who are allergic to the word Christmas say to each other on that day. Do they show up at their families’ homes with their arms loaded with Holiday gifts (wrapped in Holiday paper), and say, “Merry Holiday”? Do they stand around their Holiday tree and sing Holiday carols and eat a Holiday meal? Does no one ever say, “But what holiday?”
We’re not afraid to utter the name of any other holiday. We’re very brazen about saying Happy New Year, Happy Halloween, Happy Labor Day, Happy Columbus Day, Happy July 4th. But to say--gasp!--
Merry Christmas is just the height of rudeness? Millions of people around the world are celebrating it with traditions that go back 2000 years, yet we Americans are not allowed to say the word?
You just have to laugh. Those poor people are working so hard to remove the obvious from their … ahem … holiday, that they miss the joy of celebrating Christmas. Yes, I said it. Christmas, Christmas, Christmas, Christmas, Christmas, Christmas, Christmas! I love Christmas, and I love the spirit of Christmas, and I love the joy of Christmas. And most of all I love that it all centers around the Christ child “who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men.” (Philippians 2:6) I guess that’s what they’re really trying to avoid.
I hope you all celebrate Christmas boldly and passionately, and never be afraid to say the name of Christ. We’re not celebrating a holiday called Holiday.
Merry Christmas! And Happy Birthday, Jesus!