Friday, December 19, 2014

The Spirit of Christmas

Yes, I know what you're thinking.  "A Christmas post. Oh, boy. Here we go again. Another post about the truth of Christmas. Another post telling me what to do, and what not to do. Another post that says to remember Christmas was a 'silent', 'peaceful' night."

No, no, no. Get those notions out of your head. Yes, I agree that most Christmas posts are about the commercialization of the holiday, and about the "true meaning of Christmas" and the "reason for the season." No, I do not think the Christmas night was peaceful, nor silent, but that's a different discussion.

I'm not going to go there. Well, maybe I will, I haven't decided yet. Yes, it's absurd that Christmas decorations are for sale as soon as it starts to get cold outside, and that Thanksgiving is shoved off to the side so that we can 'celebrate' Christmas, but I'm not going to get into all that. Everybody knows that. And the majority of people will remind you that Christmas is about giving, and not the gifts, or that Christmas is a time of family and peace, or that Christmas is about Jesus and not Santa, and while that is all true, that's what pretty much everybody else is telling you, so I don't have to.

Nor do I want to.

I'm not saying that we should de-commercialize the holiday. I'm not saying that we need to step back from the Christmas stress, and focus on the reason Christmas started in the first place. No. Those may be valid points, and things that need to be done, but that's a different discussion.

Now that that's been said...

The Christmas spirit. Ugh.

You see it in Christmas cards, and on inspirational photos. You see it on the fancy plaques and through the storefront windows. Those cheesy lines that are supposed to make you feel all warm and snuggly inside. Those seasonal sayings that are supposed to induce you with the urge to 'hold those you love a little closer', and 'love those who don't know what love is', etc. etc.

Now, don't get me wrong on any of this. I'm not a Bah-humbug Christmas Scrooge. I enjoy listening to the Christmas songs, and decorating the Christmas cookies. I savor the peppermint and the eggnog and the cranberry flavors (no pun intended). I relish (there's a pun in there somewhere...) the memories made while setting up the Christmas tree, and hanging up the stockings(that is, if we hung up stockings). I do take pleasure in the Christmas season.

I guess I have two points here.

Point number one:
Christmas and Easter are supposed to be times when we reflect on Jesus. When we drop everything and focus on Jesus' birth and Jesus' death and resurrection. When we rejoice, and show and share our thankfulness for His gifts. God gave us the greatest gifts we could ever want. He gave us His only Son, and He gave us His life. He humbled Himself to take what He didn't deserve, and instead took what we deserved. As Christians, these are the foundations of our faith. Why is Christmas the only time we tell ourselves that Jesus is the reason for the season? Why is Easter the only time we are supposed to truly focus on Christ's death? Why we don't spend the whole entire year focusing on the fact that Jesus was made alive, so that He could die and be made alive again? Why do we only take time to reflect these things during their designated months of the year? Aren't these facts so precious to us that we should be focusing on them throughout the whole entire year?

Point number two:
Following suit with point number one, why does the world only intoxicate itself with happy thoughts of doing good during Christmas time? And why do we as Christ-followers tend to do the same? We follow Christ, not the world. It's one thing for the world to only dwell on their 'good works' during one month of the year, but we are suppose to be the light of the world. We are supposed to stand out and do things differently. We are supposed to do 'good' things all of the time so that we may bring God glory.

Christmas has gone from the time to celebrate Christ's birth, to the time when Santa comes with presents, to the time of the year we 'share the love and warmth' and spread the 'spirit of Christmas'.

Is there really a spirit of Christmas? Or is it the 'spirit' of Christ? Isn't Christ alive for more than one month out of the year?

~ The Random Rambler

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

My First Ramble

Hi. I'm glad you stopped by. But who knows, maybe this will be the only thing I ever post. Maybe this will sit in my saved drafts, and I'll never post it. Maybe I just spent 15 minutes starting a blog that I'm never going to use. But maybe not. 

Maybe I'll post something embarrassing, and I'll regret ever starting this blog. Maybe I'll pen a post or two, and then leave this blog to join the many others across the internet that got started, then stranded. Maybe I'll sit back when I'm old and reflecting on life, and I'll wonder what would have happened if I had actually used this blog. But maybe I won't. 

Let's step out of the box here. Let's step back and think big. Let's dream.

Yeah. I'm good at that. But most of the time I dream about silly things that won't matter in 5 years. Or even 5 weeks. Except that it would take a lot less than 5 weeks for a truckload of chocolate delivered to my door to start to matter. Or I'll dream about starting something that I end up never doing. Or I dream about.. This is why these are my ramblings. Back to stepping out of the box and dreaming...

Maybe I'll use this blog consistently. Maybe my ramblings will inspire someone. Maybe they'll change someone's life. Maybe this blog will be read by lots and lots of people, who will talk about it and share it. Maybe it'll change a lot of people's lives. But maybe it won't. 

Maybe I'll write this blog for years and years. Maybe I'll just keep hoping, and waiting, and praying for at least one person to find this. And maybe, just maybe that person will find this. And maybe that person will laugh, or cry. Or maybe they'll change their life because of something I said. Maybe after all my work, and effort, and time, one person out of over 7 million reads this. But maybe that will be worth it. 

Maybe that person will make a change in their live that allows them to become the person who discovers the cure for cancer. Or maybe that person will change in a way that puts them in a position to influence a countless number of other people. Or maybe that person simply changes in a way that enables them to begin a personal relationship with God. 

And even though it may not sound like much to you, even if it sounds silly or naive, or if it still sounds like a waste of time, may I be the one to tell you: That, most definitely, will be worth it.  

~The Random Rambler