Tri-City Ledger -

By Pete Riehm
Guest Writer 

The 'Merry' is back but what about Christmas?


December 24, 2019

The recent years’ assault on Christmas seems to have stalled. Americans have been doggedly fighting back against yuletide political correctness and President Trump jovially declared it’s safe to wish everyone a “Merry Christmas” again. So liberated from atheist angst and liberal disapproval and even threats, Americans are making Christmas merry again!

The liberal intelligentsia tried to coerce us into saying a benign “Happy Holidays” so as not to offend other religions or non-believers. Funny how Christians are demanded to show deference to every other belief under the sun, but it’s just fine to disrespect Christians wherever you find them. Weak kneed retailers jumped on the down with Merry Christmas band wagon until they realized it affected their bottom lines.

So “Merry Christmas” is back in vogue and folks are emphatically wishing one another season’s greetings to happily demonstrate their freedom from liberal speech control fanatics. It’s wonderful that we can all rejoice in reinstating this Christian salutation, but what about celebrating the true meaning of Christmas? Sure folks see you enthusiastically wishing everyone a “Merry” Christmas, but do they understand why?

With everyone so focused on gift giving, how do others know why Christians are so joyous and well, merry? Gift giving supposedly has some pagan origins, but one of the earliest Christmases was marked by the three Wise Men coming to give gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh to Baby Jesus. These kings knew their gifts paled in comparison, but they came to honor and worship the new king.

Christians have always celebrated the birth of our Savior, but for centuries some Christians were uncomfortable with the whole gift giving episode due to echoes of pagan excesses. However, the present exchange among Christians to mark God sending the supreme gift of his only begotten Son eventually became widely accepted and over the past couple centuries evolved into the commercialized gift buying bonanza we indulge today.

Is it all the gifts or just that act of saying Merry Christmas? What are we as Christians doing to share the good news and greatest gift ever? Showing appreciation and love to our friends and family with gifts is fine and fun, but we must remember and share the reason for the season. It’s Jesus’ birthday! But we don’t give Him gifts; He is the gift!

It was a cruel hopeless world for most people 2,000 years ago. It was tough enough to survive in this world, so there was little optimism for anything after this existence. Our Father in heaven sent His Son to show us there is so much more! There is eternal life without pain and suffering; salvation for all mankind! The “good news” is we each only need accept the greatest gift of Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior; and each of us can have eternal salvation!

What a most incredible infinite gift! You may dole out many baubles and trinkets, but nothing compares to sharing the gift of Jesus’ birth. What a holiday! Share the good news with everyone you know and it will indeed be a very merry Christmas. Happy Birthday Jesus!

“Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!” 2 Corinthians 9:15


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