Saturday, December 1, 2007

Have Faith, It's All In Here and Other Christmas Tidings

Since all of the Christian Christmas Catalogues have arrived, one might think that I am out of blog-fodder until the after Christmas sales.

One would be wrong to think that. I have another venue, one of my favorites for diversifying my thinking: Christian Radio.

I was driving down the street this afternoon, and learned about the latest in Bible Technology. (For further study of new Bibles, see my blog entry: Amish Romance Novels and Other Great Perks When You Become a Christian.)

A company entitled Amazing Faith has produced a micro film, apparently encased in a very sepulchral coverlet, that contains the entire Bible. It is the size of a credit card -- but can only be used for heavenly purchases. I know that was a really bad joke.

Anyway, this handy dandy Bible is totally and completely portable, and almost readable. The caveat to the portability, though, is the need to have a microscope with you.

According to, "The Itty Bitty Bible™ can be read word for word using a standard compound microscope but... have faith, it's all in there." The Itty Bitty Bible can be yours for a mere $10 (plus shipping and handling).

Now, I'm really not sure what's worse: The concept behind the Itty Bitty Bible, or the sum total of what I heard on the radio today. See, if you want, you can pay the $10 and have an Itty Bitty Bible donated to one of our troops in Iraq. That way they can all carry the word of God with them, even though they can't read it (unless they also carry a microscope).

The DJ did point out the the idea was not to get the troops to actually read the Bible, but just to "have the word of God in their Hands."

Have we really reduced the Word of God to that? Have we really made it some kind of amulet or good-luck trinket? I mean, this DJ didn't even blink at the idea that this might be, well.... a little useless. I don't know about anyone else out there, but I have to say that I can sit and hold a Bible all day, but I unless I read it, it isn't going to do much for me or any other person in my life.

Well, if you're still looking for the perfect gift for someone, my intensive research on the "Itty Bitty Bible" led me to a blog called, "Say What?" where I also learned about a product called "The Green Prosperity Handkerchief". Now, the great thing here is that it's free! You can give your loved ones the gift of prosperity and it won't cost you a cent! According to Don Stewart, creator of the Faith Handkerchief, "Thousands of people around the world have used this Biblical point of contact prayer cloth to receive abundant blessings of financial prosperity."

However, he cautions you should read the instructions before using. That's wise, because using it just might not involve blowing your nose, as you would intuitively think it would. Or perhaps it is only for times when your snot is green like the cloth. You just can't be too careful.

I was thinking, though, that a good service project might be to buy 10,000 of these handkerchiefs and give them out in India. Just enough to really stimulate their economy. Then we can move on to another 3rd world nation. After we wipe out world poverty, then we might want to give some to our government so that we can get rid of the national debt. Anyone out there want to organize that?

This also reminded my husband of a perennial favorite of ours: the Jesus Pan. The face of Jesus is molded right into the pan. Therefore, it shows up on anything you cook in the pan. The add says it all, "Imagine serving heavenly hotcakes at the next church breakfast." I can only imagine.

All this talk of Christmas gifts got me reminiscing of Christmas years past. Last year's Christmas is just a blur to me because we returned from Ukraine only several days before. However, I vividly remember the Christmas before. It was the Christmas that a large family advocacy group launched their campaign to keep Christmas Christmas, rather than just the "holiday season." I watched the campaign with some amusement because I really couldn't believe that someone didn't have any better battles to fight than tying to keep a commercial based holiday associated with a gospel that it has nothing to do with. Boy that was a long and confusing sentence.

Anyway, I got the (what seemed like) thousands of forwarded emails about what stores I was supposed to boycott, and all the forwarded emails about the ones that complied with the family advocacy group's demands. But the most amusing part of it was at the end of the season, when I was forwarded the final letter of that season's campaign.

After being a thorn in the side of many retailers, and getting several of them to change their advertising the family advocacy group decided that Christmas was getting too commercial (no kidding!) and that members should make an effort not to buy so much next Christmas.

So, let me get this straight. You antagonize the retailers about their advertising and merchandise, boycott them, finally negotiate and get what you want, and then you withdraw your support from the them? Wow.

Well, that spirit of Christmas is still alive and well. The other day, my Mom (who most certainly must have realized that she was sending me blog fodder!) sent me a link to a rather disturbing video. Don't worry, it's not obscene (unless you consider getting the song stuck in your head as obscene).

I don't even know where to start with this, except that my first thought was that there was no "gentleness and respect" that Peter calls for in I Peter, unless of course, I misread "jabs and sarcasm" as "gentleness and respect." The song is called, "It's Called Christmas with a Capital C" and appears to be a comeback at the movement to remove Christ from the Christmas celebration. Of course, if we were going to be really honest with ourselves we'd admit that Christ came out of our national celebration of Christmas long ago. I, personally, have spent the past 11 years of parenting trying to make sure Christ is put back into what is really a secular, commercial holiday (albeit a fun one).

The song has one of the "Go Fish" members or someone telling really corny, and, in my opinion, rude jokes. The first one being, "Merry Christmas Mr. Lowenstien!" -- referring to the many years that the standard holiday greeting was "Merry Christmas" despite whom you were talking to. The thing is, did we all say "Merry Christmas" because everyone celebrated Christmas? No, we said "Merry Christmas" to everyone because, I think, we were only mixing with people like us, and, as the dominate block of Americans, only catering to ourselves.

Guess what? Things have changed, and most of us know and interact with people of all beliefs and cultural celebrations. So perhaps saying "Happy Holidays" is simply a way of showing respect?

Another conundrum from the video is how we are supposed to be "taking Christmas back" but then he goes on and on about how "Merry Christmas" was never about a religion but about something cultural. He called it, "something good for us as a nation." Well, there he said it himself! Christmas, on a national level, was never about Christ!

And, while I do believe that Christ intimidates people, but not in the way they sing of, I also know that if someone was telling me that I had to tell everybody, "Happy Ramadan" because that's what people should do, it would tick me off and make me not want to listen.

So, while I'm still trying to figure out who in the world is trying to stop them from saying Merry Christmas, I have to ponder what something like this would teach children -- who are Go Fish's primary audience.

Yes, we have a right to say "Merry Christmas", and, yes, anything that is good in the country is from the influence from Christianity. However, I fail to see why that would mean that I want to force people who aren't Christians to fit into my mold. I think Christ is more concerned with reconciling those people to Him than He is with them saying "Merry Christmas."

So, without further ado.... Happy Holidays!

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