Once upon a time, in what seems like a galaxy far away, Christmas didn’t start in September. You didn’t start thinking about Christmas till Thanksgiving. It was the official start of the Christmas season. And the Macy’s Christmas Parade was the opening salvo. Even then, there was a slow ramp-up of advertising, movies, and TV specials.
But now, come Labor Day, and it’s “release the hounds” of Christmas.
Big “box stores” start moving inventory around to make room for larger decorations, lights.
Garden centers are transformed: replacing fertilizer and charcoal bags with artificial Christmas trees, inflatable and illuminating Christmas decorations.
Department stores, the few that remain open, decorated with boughs of holly and pine, draping ribbons all over the place.
Web sites are transformed into brightly colored toy departments for kids and adults alike.
Every year, it just keeps getting earlier and earlier.
Perhaps this year, everyone feels a little entitled to a bit more Christmas. With the COVID Pandemic in full swing last year, the holiday festivities were cut shout if not cut out. So, people want to make up for it this holiday season.
The picture at the top was my first Christmas sighting this year: early September. At first, there was rage, indignation, followed by an urge to complain to the manager followed by tearing it down.
But then I thought, why not go the other direction. Why not take advantage of all these public displays and remembrances that point to the birth of Jesus. Why not join in on the celebration, the festive atmosphere. Why not leverage it to remind ourselves and others not about the "what", but the "who."
For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given, and the government shall be upon His shoulder; and his name shall be called Wonderful Counsellor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace
I don't know about you, but this really fuels my hope engine.
Can we really get too much of this?