The writer C. S. Lewis describes Narnia which is under the spell of the White Witch as cold and gray. He wrote it was “always winter and never Christmas.” Our world is kind of like that, in a perpetual winter - at least until Thanksgiving rolls around. Thanksgiving is the gateway to a great thawing out. It is also the starting line to the annual culture wars (our version of a modern day holy war). It’s as the church is in a race to be the first one to say, “Jesus is the reason for the season” or “Let’s keep Christ in Christmas.” When I hear the Pharisee says these things it makes this tired, old, too often too cynical pastor want to cuss and spit, well, maybe not cuss but at least say, “Bah humbug!”

Christmas is hope, and Christmas is light! So why do those of us who like Jesus become Scrooge-like and go on a hate raid (is that still a thing) against people who say, “Happy holidays” or “Season’s Greetings,” rather than “Merry Christmas?”

What happened to “joy to the world” and all of that stuff? Aren’t we supposed to be happy that in some way most of the world celebrates Jesus? So why does Christmas make us act like one of those lap dogs that goes nuts every time the doorbell rings?

Can I be honest? I don’t care if they say, Happy holidays or season’s greetings we all know that it’s Christmas. That’s what I love about Christmas. Everything, and I mean everything; every Snoopy decoration that wears a Santa cap, every wreath, every string of lights, every plastic tree (even the white or silver ones), every blow-up snowman in the front yard, every giant snow globe with a flying penguin, and every Lifetime movie that has a golden retriever says one thing, “Happy Birthday Jesus!”

It can be Santa or a manger scene. It’s all good because it says, “Hey, Jesus, we get it!”

By the way, you know the manger scenes with the three wise men are not Biblically accurate, right? We don’t know how many “kings” there were and they came after Mary and Joseph had moved out of the barn — so the church, now that’s really what we should be upset about and start getting right in our own homes and front yards. Just saying.

I have already bought Christmas cards, and they don’t depict a woman who just gave birth, rather they have a choir singing, “Noel.” Noel means the first Christmas, that’s what we recognize, “fear not, … good news of great joy … for all people. Glory to God in the highest, … peace …” (Luke 2:10-14) If that makes you mad I’m sorry but if you are not careful you might just get one of these cards in your mailbox. Happy holidays, I mean Merry Christmas!

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. He told me to tell you that