So I’ve wondered before what the difference was between Christmas and Winter Soltice, the winter festival that existed long before Jesus ever entered our world at Bethlehem. There was a lot of gift giving and celebrations, people would have elaborate feasts. In other words, are we really that different than a pagan festival that was celebrated by so many for so long?
Now I’m not against “Tickle-Me-Elmo’s” but most of us do have to admit that if you took Jesus out of Christmas not much would change. This holiday, one of the most beautiful times on the Christian calendar, has been turned into a pretty commercial thing.
And that’s why I like this video so much.
Most of the time the church is complaining about the world sneaking up and taking what was sacred and making it profane. i.e. turning Christmas into a shopping excursion. But what if instead of just sitting back and groaning we did something more like this. What if we stopped belly-aching that commercialism was interrupting our worship, we let worship interrupt our commercialism?
I love this moment at Macy’s. Think about being there just for a second. You’re looking for that gift for the great aunt that you don’t really want to spend money on, or the husband who already has more than he needs. You are stressed, tired and your feet are killing you. And you, of course are doing it, in the name of the little baby Jesus. And then this happnes.
The pipe organ that plays with almost 30,000 pipes begins to play the most famous classical worship chorus in history, and then someone starts singing right next to you, and then another, and then another.
And before long it doesn’t feel like your in Macy’s any more. Jesus has interrupted Christmas, and it feels like the world world just might be the Temple of God.
Which of Course was true all along.