“Jesus is the reason for the season” ~
I just googled that phrase and this was the result:
- WEB: About 2,990,000 results (0.15 seconds)
- IMAGES: About 25,200,000 results (0.27 seconds)
Try as I might, I can’t bring myself to pull in one of these 25 million or so images into this post. Maybe I should go with the Santa suit hanging on the cross? Brrr gives me the shivers to think that someone thought of that and actually released it on the internets. That is definitely a good thing. I’m guessing that at this rate, I’ll never find out who coined that phrase or how it originated; but I can tell you one definite thing. I hate this sentence. It’s over used as evidenced by this one, single google search at 8:26 in the morning. I was never a fan of cliches, and this one in particular. The rhyming sound of it sounds so cheesy to me. reason for the season… reason for the season… reason for the season Great marketing? Hardly.
I guess we all need our little catch phrases, but I’m coming to believe more and more that using these “fun” phrases is just a way to avoid speaking the beautiful words that can be used instead and I’m not really talking about “Merry Christmas,” though I do like that and “Happy Christmas” is another one I like because it’s different. Of what I’m really speaking about are the beautiful words that come from our faith. I’m finding that we avoid using them because we are uncomfortable saying them. Not all of us are uncomfortable, though. The most beautiful people in the world go around saying stuff like, “May God bless you” or “I’ll pray for you,” and really mean it. Those beautiful words just roll off their tongues and it sounds so natural. After you shake off the shock of hearing it, you realize that you are touched by hearing words of love and caring, yet we hesitate to use them ourselves.
I guess I should interject here that I’m talking from my own experience, but believe that I’m not the only one with these experiences. IN my own experience, my very first recollection is feeling awkward and embarrassed if someone said something, anything socially having to do with religion to me. Maybe I too desperately wanted to appear “cool” at a time when I so obviously wasn’t. Maybe I was just uncomfortable expressing ANY greeting at all? Anyway, so hearing religious Christmas greetings like wishing people love, joy and peace in the same sentence, verbally, was awkward. If we never hear these words, we will never use these words, or be comfortable around them.
When I started to practice my faith, I came to know people who openly praised God and regularly said, what I’ll call, “religious” words like God, Jesus, bless, praise God and the list goes on. At first, I was uncomfortable but as time went by, I grew more comfortable and eventually started expressing myself in the same way…. but only at church. Little by little, I got comfortable using these words to help express myself in other, outside church social settings… and it felt good. First, we need to surround ourselves with like people of faith, it’s community we all hunger for. They are people with whom we can comfortably practice our faith openly.
In these days of political correctness, somewhere along the line we stopped being comfortable being ourselves, at least in public, outside our churches. There are so many beautiful words to use for expressing “holiday” greetings. I hate that word used in this context. If we mean Christmas, we should SAY Christmas, or the proper greeting for whatever holiday and stop saying, “Happy Holidays”… pleeease~! It’s just playing it safe. That phrase means absolutely nothing and does not transmit joy or any emotion that we most certainly feel when we reach out to strangers in this glorious season. “Glorious,” another word.
One of my favorite Christmas book/show/movie is “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.” I’ve not even seen it yet this year and my heart is swelling up three times it’s normal size already. THIS is the feeling we all need to connect to, then express with all the innocence of Little Cyndi Lou Who, who was no more than two. Once we all realize, I mean REALLY realize that the Christmas Spirit originates in the heart, then nothing and nobody can spoil it. Sound those trumpets!
There is no shame connected to honestly expressing oneself. We look for lightning fast catch phrases, sound bites. I can’t help but wonder if we just don’t want to own what we say. Say it fast, exit as fast as possible. Let’s slow down and savor the moments we speak, which means speak with care and own what you do say. We just need to take the time to move our lips (watch out don’t give yourself a cramp) and get them used to moving and using those numerous mouth muscles. I know that often I speak or post very quickly and often put my foot in it. Even so, I try to own what I say and if I need to apologize, I will. I do not hesitate about that, and well, being me, I sort of expect it quite often.
Well, I’ve used up too much of my time this morning for this post yet I feel that I’ve failed miserably in trying to communicate the thoughts that flooded into my head during the foggy moments of my morning…. pre-coffee. So, please if anyone has anything to add or say, feel free to comment and shed more light on my damp, foggy morning.
Like I tell my Gabe, USE YOUR WORDS.