Sunday, December 25, 2011
Apology to My Non-Christian Friends
I'm sorry that we Christians have defined this holiday as "the war on Christmas." I'm sorry that we get our panties in a bunch over the use of the word Xmas. I'm sorry that we write CHRISTmas, as if you hadn't seen the root word before. I'm sorry that we display the zeal of politicians in our embrace of Christmastime. I'm sorry that some Christians will read this and think, "Don't apologize for me!"
Even though you may not embrace Jesus as the center of this season, I appreciate that you like to embrace the general goodness and generosity of this season. I appreciated that you too, try to make this world a bit better during this season. I appreciate every kindness you extend to strangers regardless of your beliefs. I'm sorry that some of my fellow Christians don't appreciate that about you because "you're not getting it exactly right" from a Christian perspective.
I want you to know that like my fellow Christians, I too am guilty of making it a point to say things like Merry Christmas and God bless you, more than I am actually serving people in compassionate ways. I want my life to be exemplified as the hands and feet of my Savior, but sometimes--maybe even especially at this busy time of year--I give lip service to my faith more than actual compassionate acts. I'm sorry if I've displayed my Christ-laced words more than my Christ-based lifestyle.
But I want you to know that I and other Christ followers are trying to do better. I am so proud of my church. Can I share just a little? Just one small paragraph, I promise.
This past year we've given over 20,000 lbs of food to people in need in Kokomo. We've given 4,000+ man hours to help people and organizations in need. We've built two wells in third world countries. We bought a trailer this year just so we can take tangible things to people in need. But please don't hear bragging; I'm just proud that we're stepping up our tangible ways that reflect the heart of Jesus.
Like other churches, my church isn't perfect. We're doing better trying to live out our Christ-centered beliefs, but we have tons of room to grow. We are trying. I am trying.
Even though we Christians get it wrong, turning this season into a war and showing you our zeal; I want you to know that my heart breaks a little every time we don't lead with love. My Savior was all about love. He is love. That's what I want you to see and know. That love...the real love of Christ changes my life a little every day. I'm sorry it's not always the first thing we lead with.
Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Merry Xmas...