Merry Christmas Friend
It's that time of year again - the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. And that brings with it the great yuletide debate (or what some even call the "war on Christmas")—to say Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays? It's gone as far as people saying that Happy Holidays is an insult to Christianity.
Over the last several years, more and more people have given up the traditional 'Merry Christmas' greeting and instead turned to the more generic and what people see as the non-religious greeting of 'Happy Holidays.' It's even a rule in some places of work that their employees are not allowed to wish anyone a Merry Christmas but must use the greeting Happy Holidays instead.
What it boils down to is, what would Jesus do? Would he get upset if someone said Happy Holidays to Him? No. Would he be offended if he said Merry Christmas to someone and they said Happy Holidays back? No. He wouldn't care about the words people were using during the Holidays.
Instead, He would be more worried that, as Christians, we were following what John 13:34 states:
"A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another." –John 13:34 (NIV)
We must spread love, shine a light and be disciples of Christ. If we're having heated "arguments" with others over why saying Happy Holidays is taking Christ out of Christmas or whatever spin you put on the conversation, are we helping the situation? Probably not.
Just because Christmas has become a lot more secular and the true meaning has been taken out of the celebration in the world around us does not mean that we must give up saying Merry Christmas and our celebration of His birth!
So, let's focus on shining God's love and loving those around us, whether we agree with Happy Holidays, Seasons Greetings, or any other phrase they may use! If you correct someone who uses a different holiday greeting rather than Merry Christmas, you're likely making a non-situation a situation.
Of course, listen to your gut and follow God's leading – if you feel led to start a conversation with someone about this, please do. If not, smile, thank them, move along, and know they were probably trying to be nice (something this world needs more of with everything going on)!
All that to say, I'm not saying we shouldn't stand up for what we believe in or that we shouldn't stand up for what Christmas is about. Just remember, there's a time and place for everything. The holidays are supposed to bring people together, not further divide them. Let's help make that happen and let God's light shine from within as we continue spreading joy and enjoying the holiday season; that means treating others as we want to be treated and, more importantly, as if they were created in His image…because they were.