What is Christmas Spirit? If you do a search online asking the question you will get a variety of answers. Calvin Coolidge stated it this way: “Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind. To cherish peace and goodwill, to be plenteous in mercy, is to have the real spirit of Christmas.”
One individual responding to the question on answers.com didn’t give a definition, but described his perception of Christmas Spirit: “Wow! Right after Thanksgiving, when people’s thoughts began to focus on Christmas, it was like the whole world transformed! People were happier and had more hope. They were more helpful. People smiled and said hello to everyone they met on the streets. Once Christmas Day was over, people went back to their old selves.” If that is an accurate description, then the Christmas Spirit, if it actually exists, doesn’t endure very long.
Target seeks to boost the “Christmas” Spirit on its web site by refusing to call it the Christmas Spirit. For them, it is the “Holiday” Spirit. Their decision is motivated by a desire to be inoffensive while still embracing the positive aspects of the celebration widely identified as “Christmas.”
And they are not alone. Many in our society choose to be offended because the term “Christmas” conveys a sense of “spirituality,” which they claim victimizes them, because they are not “Christians.” Their desire is to enjoy a secular holiday, free from religious trappings and rituals.
But Christmas is more than just a holiday. It embodies a wide host of positive values including; contagious joy, cheerful generosity and personal sacrifice, which clearly identify the individual for whom the celebration is named. Christmas exists only if Christ remains a part of the celebration. Without Christ, there is no Christmas Spirit!
It is not hard to understand why those who refuse to identify the celebration as “Christmas” have no Christmas Spirit!
The key to keeping the Christmas Spirit alive is embracing Christ as your Redeemer and making Him the focus of your life. Doing so allows you to enjoy the Spirit of Christmas every day of the year.
May you have a joyful Christmas filled with the Spirit of the Christ whose birth we celebrate.