22 December, 2012

Tis the Season of Joy... Isn't It?

I was just sitting here thinking about Christmas and what we have done to it. Don't get me wrong, I love Christmas. How can you NOT love it if you keep in mind what Christmas is all about? I had a conversation with me with someone who is really down on God and Christianity right now. It's funny, he is fine with other religions, but he just trashes Christianity and the God of our faith. Anyway, this guy was ripping on Christmas and how that it is not in the Bible and because Christians "ripped off" the whole Christmas thing from a pagan festival. I think I about floored him when I agreed with him when he challenged me that Christ was not born on December 25. He just kind of looked at me when I agreed, and the look in his eyes was astonishment when I told him that he was partially right that we'd taken it from the pagan holiday. I said to him, that we did not know when Christ was born, and no one was claiming it was his actual birthday, but it had been chosen to celebrate it at this time. I asked him, "What harm does it do to celebrate it on that day?"  I asked him, don't we celebrate or recognize other holidays on marked days that are not the actual date? He said name one. So I said, "Memorial Day, Veteran's Day, Saint Patrick's Day, Thanksgiving Day, President's Day... should I go on?" He just got huffier until he no longer wanted to talk about it.

My point in mentioning this is that this guy was on the right track with something that I think we all must combat. He said that, "in the so called season of love and joy, people become bitter, hateful and greedy."  I cannot argue with him on that point. If you've been in the stores, you know how crazy people act. They will mow you down with a shopping cart if you are in their way. As I thought about this, something that happened a couple of days ago came to mind. I was in Wal-mart, and as usual, they only had a few checkout lanes open, and the store was packed. The people in front of me purchased a gift card and there was an error when the cashier entered it, and she corrected it, but it required a supervisor to come to the register to override the error. She signaled for her supervisor, but she did not come. Again and again she signaled. Several minutes went buy and the cashier apologized to the customer, to me ( I was next in line) and to the line that was formed behind me. She did this several times. She finally stepped out and yelled down to the supervisor, who came down and proceeded to chew this poor woman out. In the mean time however, the lady behind me was getting more and more belligerent toward the cashier. She kept getting louder and louder, screaming profane things at this poor woman. I finally had enough and I turned around and said, "Lady, can you see that this woman is doing everything in her power to get the problem taken care of. How dare you belittle her this way? Just who do you think you are?" Then I said, "It is bad enough to act this way anytime, but here you stand with a cart full of stuff you're going to give as Christmas presents, and you are filled with hatred and bitterness. Why don't you either chill out or go to another lane... but leave this woman alone!"  She got so angry at me that she turned red in the face and then said, "I don't have to take this!" With that, she walked off and left her cart full of stuff. The woman behind her said, "I am ashamed to admit that was my mother, and sir, you are absolutely right. Thank you!"  When I got up to check out, I reached over and took the cashier by the hand and I said, "Life is too short to let little things like that stress you out and ruin your day. Just know that God loves you and I'm praying the rest of your day is filled with joy." Her face just lit up.

I share this, not to say, "look at me". No, quite the contrary. I'm a nobody. But you know people, I think that this world needs more gifts of kind, gentle words than we do the kind we wrap and put under the tree. I pray that I can keep this in mind myself and try to do more of this 365 days a year. Maybe then guys like I spoke about at the beginning of this post would not have so much animosity toward us Christians.

Peace ya'll.

No comments: