COLUMN: A Christmas message

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Every year about this time, liberals like to taunt conservatives such as myself by asking, “So how’s that war on Christmas going?” The implication from the disdain in their voices is that there is no such thing as a war on Christmas, and that only an idiot would say there is.

How can there be a war on Christmas when people spend millions of dollars each year on Christmas presents? When the silly sentimental movie classics such as “It’s a Wonderful Life” and “A Christmas Story” will be shown umpteen times on TV? When schools and companies hold their annual “Ugly Christmas Sweater” contest every year without fail?

OK, so maybe it isn’t a war on Christmas. Maybe it is a war on the meaning of Christmas. Maybe it is a war on God, and maybe the promotion of a Christmas without God is even worse than a war on Christmas.

The secularization of Christmas has been going on for decades, but it is certainly in high speed these days. Millions of families will celebrate Christmas today without the slightest hint of interest in passing on the message of Christ. Many of those families have never owned a Bible, never been to church, never taught their children the danger of sin or the power of redemption. There will be no prayer, no grace at the dinner table, and no sense of gratitude for the gift of a savior sent to Earth with the sole purpose of giving us the example of selfless, sacrificial love.

Oh, I suppose I am on my high horse again, but I would rather be up here than down in the mire of a world that rejected Jesus then and rejects God now. Mind you, many good people are not Christians, not Jewish, perhaps not believers of any kind. Goodness comes in all varieties, but I invariably find that what is good about people finds its roots (even if the word “good” doesn’t) in what is most god-like.

The meaning of Christmas to me, then, is plain — that God is good, and he loves us. I would hope that any holiday with such a positive message would be universally praised and not subject to attacks of any kind, but that would be naive. There are, in fact, those who hate Christmas — and hate the message of love that Christ preached. Their war is a spiritual war that far exceeds anything as simple as a war on Christmas. As Jesus aptly noted, “Those who are not for me are against me.”

There is no middle ground, and it has nothing to do with Christianity, but everything to do with good and evil.

On this day, as every day, I count all people who seek the light as my friends, and all those who spread darkness as my enemies. May you find the light.

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