Welcome to Black Friday. Or is it?
La Prensa, the local newspaper here in San Pedro Sula, Honduras, is full of advertisements today—many more pages of commercial messages than news. Just like back home in the United States, the merchants are pitching their products and sales to customers eager to spend what little money they have on seasonal gifts.
But the festivities all week have not been limited to Black Friday. In fact, the newspaper has carried ads celebrating Black Weekend, Blue Friday (corresponding to the colors used by one bank), Green Week (guess that one is for money, although the paper bills here are every color but green), Yellow Week (again, the color image of the business) and yes, one that actually promoted themselves with Purple Friday. It has been a colorful week.
And so, we enter into another holiday season where the emphasis is on shopping and beautiful trees in the malls and Santa and elves and bargains.
And it looks like I’m off on my annual rant about the commercialization of Christmas. But somehow this year I don’t feel like getting all worked up and spouting off.
I just want to gently, with enthusiasm and sincerity, celebrate the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Just simply remember the baby who was born in that stable, but also the man who died on the cross. The young child who went with questions to the temple and the mature man who walked the dusty roads of Palestine proclaiming that the Kingdom of God was at hand.
The one whose direction and salvation has changed and shaped and directed my life and the one who holds my eternity in His hands.
The teacher who has shown me the way of life and service and commitment and assurance.
The Lord who I trust with all confidence for my eternity.
So, if you were expecting a rant—sorry. If you want a mild one, I invite you to read an article I wrote about those who stole Jesus from the manger scene in Costa Rica and how today’s commercialism steals Christ from the season. You can read it here.
For me, I’m going to concentrate on spending this year’s Christmas season humming Joy to the World.
And for now, I’m off to one of the Espresso Americano shops that are found everywhere around town. They have proclaimed today as “Black Coffee Day.” Sounds good to me—if they also have some black tea available.
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