It’s that time of year again. We’re eating way too much. There are those commercials featuring cars sporting red bows. We’re running from one store to the next trying to find the perfect gift.
The checkout clerk in some of those stores will wish you “Merry Christmas.” In other stores, you’ll be sent on your way with “Happy Holidays.” And with the predictability of the return of the Hess truck, there will be some in the Christian community, egged on by Fox News' perennial "War on Christmas" segments, who register their outrage over the latter seasonal greeting.
I just don’t get the need for the annual Merry Christmas vs. Happy Holidays battle. Why are some so impassioned over this? Is this a hill really worth dying on? Are we who are Christians so insecure that we are driven to force everyone to recognize our holiday and ours alone? Is hearing a sales clerk wish us “Happy Holidays” really so offensive?
It is often argued that “Jesus is the reason for the season;” therefore, we must say this time of year is Christmas, not merely a holiday season. But as I drag those seven bags of indulgent consumerism out of the mall, is Jesus really the reason for that? If not, why then should I demand that His name be invoked by the clerk while assisting me with my purchases?
Don’t mishear me. I’m quite alright with sales clerks wishing me “Merry Christmas.” But I’m no more or less alright when they kindly wish me “Happy Holidays.”