The Winter of MY Discontent

Something is beginning to bubble up in me.  Something I can’t really put my finger on, but there’s a sense of discontent beginning to rise to the surface of my being.  I don’t know what is causing it, but I know that it is there. 

Today is Black Friday.  ???  !!!   The news has stories about stores opening at 6am & shoppers pushing & jostling each other to be the first to get at merchandise for Christmas!    Some stores unlocked their doors at midnight to jump-start the season. CompUSA Inc. and BJ’s Wholesale Club opened on Thanksgiving so they could be the first to take your money for the “holy days”.  Some people skipped Thanksgiving Dinner to wait in line to get a PS3.

 Walmart has recinded it’s mandate to employees to not say “Merry Christmas”.  Last year employees were told to say “happy holidays”  it’s a more inclusive greeting.   Because of the backlash (& it’s resulting loss of sales) Walmart has gone back to Christmas. 

Ok, am I the only one in the world who doesn’t want to do this anymore?  Is this how YOU want to celebrate the birth of Jesus?  I don’t!  Is this what we want to teach our children?  To grab & push,  to not spend time with our families so that we can get more stuff? 

I’m tired.  Tired of pretending.  Tired of consuming junk that has no value.  What we do to celebrate Jesus laying aside His glory & being Emmanuel is to consume mass quanitites of stuff.   We gorge on syrupy stories of peace & good-will toward each other on television when we should be concentrating on the peace that only comes from relationship with Christ & commemorating God’s good will towards us!  To remember the gift of eternal life that the Father gave us with the birth of Jesus we break our budgets & our backs with the burden of giving gifts to everyone that we know (including the mail carrier & our 3rd graders substitute teacher).  And sadly, these gifts more often reflect our pride or our financial status than our feelings for a person. 

Now don’t get me wrong.  If you give a present to your mail carrier I do not think that you are doing wrong.  I don’t think that you have succumbed to the demon of consumerism.  I’m just saying that maybe we  (no I should be writing to myself) I should be more thoughtful in the way that I celebrate.  More prayerful.  More sincere.  More real! 

I’m looking for suggestions on how to celebrate the “holy days”.  I want to put Christ first in my life.  I want to celebrate Him & the gift He gave in a real & tangible way.  I want my kids to see that we really have something different than the world has.  That our walk with Christ is worth holding on to.  Worth living for.   Worth dying for. 

Check out JavaDawn’s blog!  She’s said what I feel so much more eloquently.

http://javadawn.wordpress.com/2006/11/15/getting-from-there-to-here/

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