Isaiah 9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
John 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
Well another holiday season has snuck up behind us and pounced. We have shiny packages , evergreen garland , sparkling lights and even a Christmas tree decorated with miniature Craftsman tools scattered around our store. Our district and regional sales managers are exhorting us to excel to new heights of salesmanship and make lots of money for Sears…and our customers are scouting out the very best deals they can find for their holiday giving. Boy am I excited!
As I prepare to serve my customers this holiday season I try to constantly remind myself why we are celebrating. The first holiday we come to is Thanksgiving. This is not a religious Holy day (although it could be) nor is it a day of rest before the consumer driven feeding frenzy of Christmas shopping begins. This is a day set aside to give thanks to God for the bounty He has blessed us with in the past year. Families’ gathering to share a meal and spend time together is what was intended. Not opening your business from 6pm to midnight to squeeze as much money from consumers as possible. As the madness that is “black Friday” and the following weeks descend upon us I try to focus my thoughts on the reason we are celebrating Christmas. We are remembering and celebrating God fulfilling His promise, sending His Son here to reconcile us to Him. Nowhere is a fat guy in a red suit with a bunch of pet reindeer mentioned.
Don’t misunderstand me here, I am not a “Santa hater” nor am I the Grinch (although my wife could make a good argument that I am). I just am bothered by the way the holidays have been hijacked by the retail stores. As I am being yelled at by an irate customer because I don’t have the particular widget that he wants in my store or listening to someone tell me how I personally have ruined Christmas for their poor widowed mother whose washer broke, I try to remind myself about the real “reason for the season” It’s about Jesus! Not presents, turkeys, football games, and things. It is about Jesus! As you are doing your holiday shopping if you happen to see some store clerk or salesperson who has that “Christian about to be fed to the lions” look, stop and say something nice, or just give them a smile. And remember we are supposed to be celebrating Jesus’ birth.