Saturday, March 22, 2008

It's a shame

I'd like to celebrate the holidays like I did as a kid. I'd like to share the joy and celebration with my own children as I remember waiting in anticipation for those days to come when I was younger. It is a shame I now realize how so many of these days, Christmas, Easter, even birthdays are so commercialized now that I feel repulsed by the thought of them. I don't want to. I want to celebrate the holidays with my children in a way untouched by the media, the salesmen, the advertisers...

I don't want to go out and buy things just because I'm somehow supposed or expected to. Why is it that I have to go buy a basket and stuff it with marshmallow chickens and chocolate rabbits to celebrate the fact that Christ died for our sins? Why do I have to buy a card and flowers on a certain day to tell my wife I love her?

I now realize what I grew up knowing as tradition was all a ploy by marketers to line their own pockets. We bought into it. We've sold ourselves into losing the meaning of days. Why do I feel awkward for wanting to show my wife I love her year round and doing nothing spectacular on a certain predesignated day in February? Why do I need to give my kids a sugar rush to thank the Lord for caring about our salvation? Why the obligation? I'm not simply put off by it, it's not even that I'm ashamed by wanting to keep it simple... I'm almost angry in feeling that I've got to explain myself when it comes to telling others that we don't exercise those sales rituals in our home.

My kids were invited to a Valentine's thing in February where it was the classic buy valentines cards for everyone, go and hand them out. Our kids abstained. We stayed home. I was a little embarrassed, to be quite frank, when our children received cards the next few days from children who did participate. We denied our kids a day with their friends because we were in a conscious battle with commercialism. It is not our kid's fight. They were helpless victims who knew no different. We've never done Valentine's day, Jackie and I.

When they are grown... When they can make the decisions for themselves... My hope is that they will realize holidays for their true meaning and will leave the merchandisers twisting in the breeze. If they feel deprived, if they feel they missed out on a crucial part of being kids, I'll go ahead and apologize now. Go ahead kids, spoil your own children with sugary sweetness.

As for me and my house, we will celebrate a time if reflection, a time of family, a time for rejoicing in our good fortune and blessings, a time for love.

Oh... on a lighter note. Jax and I were walking through the local "Bible Shop" looking for a Veggie Tales movie for the kids to watch on the way to Oki when we stumbled across this gem:

Communion is as simple as 1, 2, 3...? What about Step 1: Accept Jesus as your savior. Step 2: Live each day as though you were given a second chance at life because He gave you His. Step 3: Peel back air tight seal to eat the wafer...

Is there no place untouched by marketing?

Consequently, this post has been brought to you by Dunkin Donuts. Purveyors of over-caffeinated coffees and sweetly fried cakey morsels.

Happy Easter everyone.

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