Christmas in America
December 23, 2007 – by Per Christensson
So Christmas is two days away. I find it interesting how the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas seems to take forever, yet the final week before Christmas goes by so fast, it basically doesn't exist. Only crazy people shop at the mall the final weekend before Christmas. After all, aren't there several weeks, or even months, to get all that holiday shopping done? Yet, this year I found myself in the midst of the madness, buying my gifts at the last minute.
Yes, I have several excuses. But so does everyone else. I suppose the most common is, "I've been too busy to go shopping." Funny how these same people find time during the busiest time of the year to finally do it. That fact is, we're all busy in some way. But we each have the same 24 hours each day as everyone else. Sure, some of us have more responsibilities than others, but ultimately, we are each responsible for how we spend our time.
Has anyone else noticed that during the week before Christmas, stores stay open later and later each year? A lot of stores are now open until midnight or even later, which is evidence of our overcrowded schedules. No one should be so busy throughout the day that he or she has to shop at 11:30 PM. In Europe, stores close earlier than in the United States and are often not even open on the weekend. While Americans enjoy the convenience of 24/7 shopping, it may not be the blessing we think it is. Maybe some time is best reserved for friends and family, without having the option to go buy more things.
Sometimes people will say, "Live a little," meaning do something fun every once in awhile. Unfortunately, that's how a lot of people live. They wade though the drudgery of life, only to have an occasional glimpse of joy and fun. I'd like to say, "Live a lot," meaning enjoy the friends, family, and creation God has given us, not just during the holidays, but throughout the year. Maybe then we'll find ourselves less "busy" with the chores of life and more joyful for the life we have. Perhaps we'll even find time to get our Christmas shopping done a few weeks early as well.