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Let’s Be Honest. Jesus Probably Hates Christmas.

Look. If you were around here back when I had to break up with my counselor, you know where religion and I stand.

But that doesn’t mean I can’t believe in Jesus, or at least the idea of Jesus from the standpoint of a loving, compassionate spirit.

And let me tell you —

If Jesus were alive today (I know, I know, He is), He would take one look at Christmas in the U.S. and die.

Think about it. Let’s pretend, just for a second, that you’re the nicest, most caring and giving person on the planet. Then let’s pretend that you die in some horrifically awful way, and all the while you’re praying — praying — for the people who are killing you because you’re just. that. nice. Then you come back to life, and I’ll be honest when I say that this is where the details get a little fuzzy for me, but now everyone knows how awesome You are and from now on they know they should all strive to be awesome in Your name.

Kind of cool, huh?

Except let’s fast forward a couple of thousand years. It’s your birthday. And instead of a quiet family gathering at your favorite Middle Eastern restaurant, the entire world — or maybe just third of it, but still — wants to celebrate your birth.

Game ON, you say. Let’s get this party started! Maybe we could volunteer at a soup kitchen or wrap presents for orphans or do some straight-up, old-school laying on of hands? How cool would that be? Who’s in?


Uh, guys? I thought we were celebrating my birthday. What’s wrong?

“Well,” answer the majority of U.S. citizens in unison, “that sounds fun and all, but we were thinking we’d just bake some cookies and set them on a plate in the living room, eat them ourselves in the middle of the night and tell our kids some fat guy did it, unwrap all of our presents in the morning, and sit around most of the day eating and watching re-runs of Honey Boo Boo. And we might go to church.”

Your jaw drops open.

You do what?

“We open presents. Oh, and we pray.”

Oh, at least you pray.

“Yep. We pray the kids like what we bought ’em, otherwise there will be Hell to pay.”

At this point you slap yourself in the face, just to make sure you’re not dreaming.

Let me get this straight. On MY birthday, you spend exorbitant amounts of money on gifts for selfish children who threaten tantrums if they don’t get what their friends are getting, then you sit around watching television about other rotten children, and then you go to church?


To teach them about Me and how awesome and caring and giving I was?

“Uh… yep.”


If you’re celebrating this year, religious or not, let’s just remember what it’s about. Love your family, love your friends, and if your kids put up a fuss about what they get (or don’t get), feel free to package up their gifts and send them to children in the world who might really appreciate them.

Believe me.

There are plenty.

Update: For the record, I love Christmastime. I’m not a Scrooge. I have a great time, whether we’re hosting a Christmas for misfits at our own place or heading back to Omaha to hang with Justin’s huge, fun-loving family. I love the food and the merriment and being surrounded by wonderful people. I even love the giving and receiving of gifts. This was just a quippy post about the one big problem with the holiday – commercialism. Nothing new, but I thought I’d ring in. :)

(Speaking of gifts, my giveaway ends at midnight tonight! If the season has to be about getting stuff, it may as well be free. Just sayin’.)


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Bah humbug, eh? :)

No, you know what? I’m a total Christmas lover (though not a Christian in the slightest.) I love the music and the lights and the food and the being with family.

And while I am generally anti-commercialism, I do also love the presents. I mean, they’re fun to get, but it’s more that I love to spend the time finding the perfect thing for someone that I know they’ll love. (Yes, my need for perfection in this is a lot of pressure, but it’s also something I take a lot of pride in.) Life is busy and I often don’t get to see or spend enough time with the people I care about. For me, getting them gifts that I know will make them smile makes me feel like I can show them that I do care. Does that make sense?

But. I completely agree with you about the spoiling of kids. It’s actually pretty shocking. There’s a big ad campaign they have here every Christmas about getting people experience gifts instead of crap that will end up in the landfill. I really like it, because honestly, my most memorable presents were when I got dance classes, or the gift certificate to iron 10 articles of clothing for me. I also think it especially applies to kids, because they’re going to lose interest in most of that plastic crap really quickly anyway.


Believe it or not, I completely agree with you. :) The holiday is beautiful – that’s why I celebrate it. And gift-giving, too, is really great when you can find something you know someone will love. I actually had a paragraph about this as it applies to children at the end, but I deleted it, lest I sound too ranty. (Sounds like I sound ranty anyway, lol) The gist was that getting them one or two special things and then teaching them to donate to someone in need would allow them to experience how great it feels to get and give.

There’s nothing better than seeing the joy on a kid’s face when he opens something he really loves — except maybe seeing the joy on a kid’s face when he sees someone else open something he gave. ;)


I’ll bet that would be a good thing to see. I barely know any children. I mostly hear of them second-hand, or see them in shops, which, to be fair, is hardly where they’re at their best. (They were cute as hell at Disney on Ice though.) But you hear about people spending fortunes on their kids and I really don’t think it’s doing them any favours. We didn’t have a lot of money when I was a kid and so we didn’t get a lot of stuff and we were fine. (Now that I’m an adult, my mom spoils me rotten though – I like that much more.)


I think you hit the nail on the head. :)


Thanks, Meg!

Kat Richter

I’m still horrified by all of the Thanksgiving shopping madness. And the fact that one of the “hottest” gifts this year is the DIGITAL crayola crayon. WTF??? What is wrong with normal, non-digital crayons??? One of my favorite holiday traditions is when my family and I all get together and go Christmas shopping for our favorite charity, the Camden Rescue Mission. I’m not gonna lie: I LOVE shopping, and I love Christmas shopping, so we all get together and go crazy but we go crazy for someone else, which is the best of both world in my opinion. This year, we brought my boyfriend and his kid along along since my brother wasn’t able to make it and bought about four carts worth of Christmas toys and children’s bicycles at Target. Even my grandparents came along (and my grandmother kept picking lame gifts in my humble opinion but hopefully there are little kids out there who will enjoy her fuzzy lion cub blankets or whatever they were…) We packed everything into my dad’s VW bus and then drove it all over to Camden (which for those unfamiliar with the area is one of the poorest and most violent cities around). I thought I was going to die of embarrassment as we were all driving around in the bus but it was a lot of fun at the end of the day :)


I don’t know where to start!

1. A VW BUS??!!?! Your parents just got even cooler than I already imagined.
2. I think a lion cub blanket sounds fantastic!
3. Digital crayon? This is exactly why I don’t have cable.
4. I like shopping, too. And I like buying gifts. I guess it’s just a matter of drawing the line when your kids are spoiled. :)
5. I think this sounds like the BEST family tradition ever! You guys rock!


Woah Stephanie took the words out of my mouth!


She’s crazy insightful. (And so are you!)

RHome410 @ Friday is Pizza, Monday is Soup

This is NOT a Scrooge post at all… The behavior of others is more Scrooge-like, as you point out, in how it misses the whole point. The idea of gifts were to show love, and remember that Jesus was a loving Gift to us, but things are a bit crazy in society, as a whole.

I’ve never heard of digital crayons, thank goodness, but I’m tired of digital everything… (She says, having to admit she stayed up too late playing the stupid “Angry Birds!”..So I’m SUCH a good example.) My mom just gave our 8 yr old an art set with markers and regular, ol’ Crayons, and he’s thrilled with it. I’m so glad he’s remembering that fun comes from simple things and a bit of creativity. He wanted an MP3 player for Christmas, and I tried to talk him into a remote-controlled helicopter or, better yet, a construction toy. He gave up on the mp3, and asked for Vans shoes instead! -Huh? But that’s the downside of having teenaged siblings… Have to be ‘cool’ like them.

Great post.


REAL crayons and markers! What a great gift! Sure, they require a bit more vigilance on the part of the parent so you don’t end up with lovely wall art, but it’s so simple! It’s gotta be trippy when your kids start asking for clothes instead of toys. I’m not sure I ever really got to that point while I lived at home. :)


Testi-freakin-fy! Only I have gotten to the point where the overwhelming obscenity of unbridled commercialism during this time of the year has made me (more of) a cynical ass. Here’s the formula Madison Ave. uses: Take name listed on calendar; slap it in the middle of pre-fab ads hinting to consumers that they suck if they don’t buy ALL THE CRAP; mark insanely over-priced ALL THE CRAP down enough that profits don’t suffer at all; rinse for next named calendar day and repeat.

I’m not saying “bah humbug”, but I AM saying “eat a necrotic goat johnson, big, exploitative corporations”.


You had me until “necrotic goat johnson.”



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