Letter to the Editor: It's okay to say Merry Christmas!
- Saturday, 17 December 2011
In preparing to give a devotion recently, I remembered a button a friend gave me saying: "It's okay to say Merry Christmas!" In government, businesses and schools, this is now politically incorrect, and we say "Happy Holidays" so we don't offend anyone by referencing Christ. But if it hadn't been for Him, we wouldn't be celebrating much at all.
We now have generic holidays and winter "carnivals", but if my Jewish friend wishes me a Happy Hanukkah, I wish her the same. That is a celebration of her faith and culture. It takes nothing away from what I believe to join her glad wishes. If my friend of color wishes me a blessed Kwanzaa, I wish her one too. To an Iranian friend, I return wishes for a joyful Ramadan. But because I believe Jesus Christ is the true reason for celebration, grant me the privilege of wishing Merry Christmas.
Although many may participate in the tradition, it's not the Wiccan priestess of the winter solstice that the world recognizes at this time of year. It's not the tribal leader whose name is known wherever it is spoken. The Pope and Moses are powerful names, but they do not capture the attention and focus of the whole world. Celebrate all the holidays and carnivals you can possibly name, but when children go back to school, the first thing most of them ask is not "what did you get for the holiday", but "what did you get for Christmas?"
Christmas is a celebration of God's Son, Jesus Christ, who changed history when He arrived in a Bethlehem stable, labored as a carpenter in lowly Nazareth, and spent three years in a ministry so powerful it first covered Jerusalem, Rome, and now the whole world.
To this day, His name and His story are told in all nations. Even to unbelievers, the greeting of Merry Christmas brings excitement, joy, and warmth. To those who know Him, His name brings hope and peace, because He is the only one who came to earth to die for us; His is the only name to bring the gift of eternal life. Don't pass up this gift.
Merry Christmas to you!
Deb Reynolds, Travelers Rest, SC