Lake Stevens Journal - Your hometown newspaper since 1960

 

By Dr. James L. Snyder
Contributing Writer 

Let the holiday season begin

 


This is the time of the year holidays get into full steam. It begins with Halloween when people put on a scary face and ends with New Year’s day when people put on a new face. I could never figure out if the Halloween face was the New Year’s Day face just that much older.

I do not have much time for Halloween. Since the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage has put me on a strict diet that does not include candy, what is the purpose of going out on Halloween night begging for candy?

It seems rather interesting that our holiday season starts out with people going around door-to-door begging for candy and ends New Year’s Day making resolutions not to eat any more candy this year.

I love all of the ingredients making up our holiday season whether it is Halloween candy or Thanksgiving turkey or New Year’s Day pork and sauerkraut. These traditions that center on eating is right up my alley. If the alley is dark enough, my wife will not catch me in the act.

One ingredient I really do not appreciate during the holiday season are all the grouches and complainers and sourpuss people that insist on trying to take the fun out of my holiday time.

On the one hand, you have those who pretend they do not believe in God and yet during this time of the year they get all bent out of shape by the mere mention of God. They nervously say they do not believe in God and yet my belief in God threatens them somehow.

If they really did not believe in God they would not care one way or the other if somebody was stupid enough to believe in God. They would just sit back in their rocking chair smiling at the poor fools who go through the holiday season thanking God and celebrating the birth of Jesus on Christmas day.

For instance, I do not believe in the tooth fairy. I think it is the figment of someone’s imagination and nothing exists that in any way resembles the tooth fairy. Yet, that is not the center of my life going around trying to prove there is no such thing as a tooth fairy. How do you explain to a child the money under his pillow after placing his extracted tooth?

Perhaps another illustration would be Halloween. I do not believe in ghosts, goblins and all of the stupidity invested in this kind of a holiday. Yet, my whole life is not focused around trying to disprove ghosts and goblins. If somebody wants to believe in ghosts and goblins, what is that to me?

I do not believe there was ever such a creature as Rudolph the red nose reindeer. Somebody made that up to go along with the Christmas story. I do not think Santa Claus ever existed. Not all the stories I have read about Santa Claus has ever convinced me such a person existed.

Yet, I do not spend the whole holiday season ranting and raving trying to disprove Rudolph the red nose reindeer and his master St. Nicholas. If somebody wants to believe in Santa Claus and his reindeer and that Rudolph the red nose reindeer saved Christmas one year, what is that to me? I say let people indulge in these marvelous little fantasies.

I cannot tell you how many years I sat on Santa Claus’s lap and to this day, nothing I asked for has ever come my way via Christmas. Yet, this Christmas I will take my grandchildren to the mall and have them sit on Santa Claus’s lap and tell him what they want for Christmas.

Believing in the mall Santa Claus is pure fantasy.

Yet, I am not going to picket the mall around Christmas time demanding they do away with the mall Santa Claus. After all, Santa Claus in the mall brings customers to the mall.

Many fantasies I do not put any trust in, but I do not build my life around destroying these fantasies other people enjoy.

I do not recall how old I was when I found out that Santa Claus was just a fictional character that made Christmas something of a fantasy. Even though I discovered that Santa Claus was not real I found myself as a father telling the Santa Claus story to my children and then later to my grandchildren.

Some of these people attacking the holiday season, including the Christmas tree, are just indicating that somewhere along the line they have not grown up. If they do not believe in the holiday season, particularly Christmas, then let us who love the holiday season, especially Christmas, enjoy it.

I advise those who do not enjoy the holiday season to go up to Western Pennsylvania, find Punxsutawney Phil and spend the winter with him. We will be sure to look for you come spring.

I like how the apostle Paul put it. “When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things” (1 Corinthians 13:10).

Some people, I am not mentioning who, needs to just grow up and stop acting so childish.

I will celebrate the holiday season for the simple reason that God’s amazing grace has brought me through another year.

Rev. James L. Snyder is pastor of the Family of God Fellowship, PO Box 831313, Ocala, FL 34483. He lives with his wife, Martha, in Silver Springs Shores. Call him at 1-866-552-2543 or e-mail jamessnyder2@att.net. His web site is http://www.jamessnyderministries.com.

 

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