A few weeks ago, my wife and I were asked to create prayer experience stations for a worship service that focused on caring for God’s creation. Part of the experience was a good reminder of things I know, and part was a new learning experience of ecology facts I wasn’t aware of (like if everyone on the planet lived like we do in the U.S., it would take 4 Earths to supply all the resources).

As we draw closer to our Savior’s Birthday, this thought of recycling and caring for the earth, is feeding a growing unrest in my heart with Christmas. We are all aware of how our culture drives us to spend, spend, spend in buying presents for your loved-ones. Our extended families have fought this trend by drawing names and buying presents for just that person, instead of for everyone. To help facilitate this, everyone is supposed to make a list of what they want for Christmas. I’ve been non-cooperative. Making lists of what you want just doesn’t feel right. What ever happened to, “Because I love you, I want to know you. Because I know you, I will know how to bless you.”?

What is the best way to celebrate our Savior’s birth? Is it in buying lots of stuff? Recently I ran across the following Where Did I Say. This comes from the website: www.buynothingChristmas.org.
There are several more posters like this available to download for free.

This poster has fueled my discontent for our current celebration for Christmas. Some emergent churches are also apparently discontent. One in San Diego has used this image to advertise their messages: Advent Conspiracy. Dan Kimball is preaching a similar sermon series this Advent at his church in Santa Cruz, CA.

So, how can we best celebrate our Savior’s birth? Is spending less and giving more the proper way? Is spending more time with friends and family and less time running around shopping a better way? (Shopping less doesn’t just save money, it can reduce the amount of resources used to make stuff in addition to saving all the carbon dioxide your car produces as your drive around.) What about shopping at your local thrift shop as one way to recycle when you purchase gifts? I’m sure the Salvation Army or Goodwill can use your money more than the big box stores that we shop at.

How do you celebrate Christmas? What’s most meaningful for you at this time?

Blessings to you as you prepare for Christmas!