Tuesday, December 13, 2011


How`s my mental health today?

I think I've overdosed on tawdry Holiday and Christmas specials.

"Happy Holidays!"
"Merry Christmas!"
"Seasons Greetings."
"Christmas Concert."
"Winter Concert."
"Christmas Tree."
"Holiday Tree"
"Christmas Lights."
"Holiday Lights."
"Meaning of Christmas."
"Spirit of Christmas."
"Reason for the Season."
"Christmas Special."
"Holiday Special."
"Santa Claus."

A little over a week ago Heidi and I tuned into what had been billed as a 2 hour Christmas Musical Special. While the music was enjoyable and very well performed, the closest any of it came to something 'Christmassy' was an ode to Dr Seuss's Grinch.

Several days later we watched a sappy, predictable movie about the disappearance of the 'Spirit of Christmas'. Several days before that we had watched the movie Elf, in which Santa's sleigh would no longer fly because people no longer believed in Santa - just like Tinkerbell was dying in Peter Pan because of an absence of belief. Everything turns out wonderful with the renewal of belief. Last night I saw the beginning of a dreadful musical version of Dicken's A Christmas Carol. Similar fare can be seen on TV almost every evening.

It's all a bit much, and I'm rather tired of it all.  Maybe I'm a bit jaded, cynical, but I don't think I'm the only one.

I've heard people argue about the appropriateness of labeling everything "Holiday Something" or the lack of political correctness in every reference to Christ and the Christian faith.  I came across the following cartoon on someone's Facebook page.
The range of comments (arguments) about the cartoon and its message bordered on the ridiculous and disturbing. Some commentators were downright rude and abusive. One person stated that Santa originated in the church (Saint Nicholas). Others insisted that religion had no place in this celebration of politically correct commercialism.

I shake my head when I hear people who only go to church for weddings and funerals, and have no other connection to religion and faith, argue that Christ must remain in Christmas. Why is that important to them?

I believe that Christmas is about God coming to earth as the infant Jesus to redeem me and everyone one on earth. How should I celebrate this occasion? Can I do it in a way that illustrates a far more significant message than "Happy Birthday Jesus?"

I'm having a tough time overcoming the depressing secular domination and pollution of Christmas to rejoice in the message the angels brought to the shepherds so long ago.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” 

Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared 
with the angel, praising God and saying, 
“Glory to God in the highest heaven,
   and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” 
- Luke 2: 8-14

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