Words of Worth

Merry Christmas is the Right Thing to Say

December 13, 2013

merry christmasHave you ever shared a weighty matter of your heart with another person hoping they would say “just the right thing” to soothe your pain? I have from time to time and I have walked away, not necessarily with an antidote to my pain, but with the assurance that the listener “said all the right things” without really meaning the right thing. So I began to ponder, “What does ‘they said all the right things really mean?”

As is often the case, at the time I began pondering, I read an article written by a non-American native English speaker who was frequently baffled by the things that Americans often say. The article was an attempt to decode those phrases that may have been the right thing to say, but bore little heartfelt genuineness.  For example:

1. A sales clerk says, “Have a nice day!” That’s the right thing to say to a customer, however, they are not saying that they will lose any sleep if they later learn that your day was less than “nice”. What they may truly mean is, “I don’t care what kind of day you have, but please tell my manager I was friendly so I get an extra commission.”

2. “Let’s have lunch sometime.” That’s the right thing to say when people run into each other. However, neither person is speed dialing a restaurant to make a reservation for lunch. Is that because it is just a nice thing to say when the likelihood of getting together is highly unlikely?

3. Someone in tune with the spirit of this season who says, “Happy holidays!” is saying the right thing. However, the true translation or meaning of that greeting is, “I wish you a politically correct, happy, and nonspecific celebration in December and early January!”

Christmas is too serious an event to say all the right things without the truest of intentions. What would it have been like if the angel gave Mary, the mother of Jesus, the right message without the deep and true meaning of what that message truly meant for the entire world? We would be of all men most miserable and hopeless because we would not have received the good news of great joy that a Savior, who bore all the weight and sin of the world upon His shoulders, was given to us.

As Christmas, 2013 approaches, “Merry Christmas!” is the right thing to say if said with the truest, most honest meaning of wishing all the joy, hope, and peace that the our Heavenly Father promises to those who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ.

“But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.”
Luke 2:10-12

Merry Christmas!

P.S. The Anglo-Saxon meaning of the word “merry” is mighty! Even better!

Have a Merry, Mighty Christmas!

(Sheryl)

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