by Tammy Taylor
OK, I’ve just gotta ask. Is it just me or does it seem holiday commercialism has really gotten out of control? I mean, when you think back to past Christmases don’t you think about the days when children’s eyes lit up over the magic of it all and the excitement of opening a gift that held that cherished doll or a new baseball glove? It seems now it’s more represented by expectations of a higher and higher stack of gifts each year. And incredibly expensive & elaborate gifts & electronics even for very young children.
And did I REALLY just see a commercial where a small girl sitting on Santa’s knee was demanding a new car for her busy lifestyle?? Now I’m not saying that gifts aren’t fun – they are. It’s wonderful to be able to give that perfect gift. And Christmas is a beautiful season of sharing. But when did it turn from the simpler times of the past to “what’s in it for me” and frenzied attempts at Martha Stewart-caliber holiday decorations? It’s all just gotten so crazy.
It hurts my heart to think there are so many people out there that don’t see this beautiful holiday as a joy, but as a highly-stressful time when expectations & time demands grow more & more unattainable each year. And all across America there are many families with very little income are barely putting food on their tables yet stressing over not being able to ‘provide Christmas’ for their families, assuming that Christmas itself comes from a store.
Again, gifts are fun and there’s nothing wrong with enjoying that aspect of the holiday. What I have a problem with is that such a beautiful season of sharing and caring can be so heavily marred by the almighty buck.
For me as a christian, the Christmas season is special to me primarily for the joy I feel over the birth of my savior Jesus Christ. It’s also a time RancherMan & I feel compelled to gather and surround ourselves with our most precious blessing – our family.
I’ve been trying to pull back from the hustle & bustle of an overly-commercial Christmas for quite a few years now but I’m not going to lie, it was an uncomfortable move for me. We were hoping not to disappoint our loved ones with the scaling back. But to us it was important enough to soldier through.
RancherMan & I now make almost all of our gifts ourselves and the gifts we do buy are very modestly priced. (yes, even for our precious grandbabies!) It’s taken deliberate action to push away the commercialism of the holiday and return the joy of Christmas to our home. RancherMan & I enjoy decorating for the holidays but the decorations are simple yet tasteful. Our tree is tiny but sentimental. Our gifts are inexpensive but straight from the heart.
Think about your holiday – what’s special for you about Christmas? Has it become different from the joyous Christmases past? If you could, what would you change to realign the holiday with your values?
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