The Expanded Tweets posts expand on a short post on Twitter (or, a tweet), because 140 characters isn’t always enough to tell the whole story.
Over the weekend, we had an interesting shopping experience. Here is the short version:
So now, here is the longer version. We went to a particular store on Saturday afternoon to get a few crafty kind of things. There were a whole lot of people in the store, but actually I was a little surprised that there weren’t even more people there, so it could have been worse.
After we had been there for a bit, we heard the announcement that I tweeted above over the speaker system, and all those around us chuckled a bit about it. After all, it seems funny to find Baby Jesus as the register.
But to me, it really brought home how commercialized Christmas has become. I’m sure the early celebrations of the birth of Christ were actual celebrations of the birth of Christ and not big, commercialized gift-giving affairs. And for this argument, let’s not even get into the discussion about how the Bible never gives any details at all about the actual day of Jesus’ birth, or how many scholars think it was actually in the spring instead of in December. The fact is that the world celebrates it in December, whether that was the actual date or not. Good luck getting that changed now.
Can you just imagine if there were suddenly concrete proof that the birth of Jesus had happened in, let’s say, March? How much trouble would it be for the stores to change their culture of business to have their big Christmas sales at that time? Would the day after Valentine’s Day be Black Whatever Day? And would we suddenly not know what to do with ourselves between Thanksgiving and the end of the year? But I digress.
Anyway, there seemed to me to be a bit of irony in someone looking for Baby Jesus at the cash register, instead of in the manger. Or in the Bible. Maybe if there were a star in the sky shining down over the cash register, that might help people. Except of course that the star would be leading them to the wrong place. Wouldn’t it be great if we did have a star shining brightly in the sky to lead us in the right way. Would it lead us to the nearest mall or superstore? Or perhaps somewhere else?
Are people really looking for Jesus at the cash register, or in a store, or even in a greeting card to send to their friends and loved ones? Because if so, they just might be looking in the wrong place. Maybe, just maybe, we have all missed the real point of what the holiday was established before, long, long ago.
Yes, I know the lady that was being called wasn’t looking for the real Baby Jesus.
And maybe that is one of the problems with the world today.
But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” - Luke 2:10-12