Good grief! Charlie Brown’s Christmas has now been poked by politics as President and First Lady Obama gave their interpretation of the true meaning of Christmas. Just before the 50th Anniversary broadcast of the popular cartoon, the message from the first couple was aired to millions of viewers.
Mrs. Obama – “The (Charlie Brown gang) has taught us what the true meaning of Christmas is.”
President Obama – “They teach us that tiny trees just need a little love, and that on this holiday, we celebrate peace on earth, and good will toward all.”
Mrs. Obama — Because as Linus knows, that’s what Christmas is all about.
Okay, simmer down, Gertrude. Some of you are thinking, “What’s wrong with that?” Others are thinking, “Everything’s wrong with that.” I come down on the side of thinking the sentiment was sweet, but failed to mention the Holy birthday boy, but I’m not going to get my elf knickers in a knot over it, because my husband and I decided long ago it was our responsibility to teach our family the meaning of Christmas, not society.
TV and social media aren’t bad – oh, who am I kidding? They’re horrible, and that’s why we override and clarify murky messages that come into our home, even when it’s from the President. If you leave a child’s religious education to the world, you’ll get. . .the love of tiny trees.
Are you upset that Starbuck’s paper cups didn’t have a Christmas message? Here’s an idea, read the Bible. It’s packed full of Christmas cheer, and throws in Easter for free. Are you bummed-out that the cashier, who is only trying to do her job, isn’t allowed to wish you a Merry Christmas? Why don’t you wish her one instead? Or maybe you could shop at a store like Hobby Lobby, Piggly Wiggly or Chic-fil-A where they’ll Christmas you up one side and down the other, slap a bow on your head and slide you under the tree. I just love it when that happens. (no sarcasm there, I really do love it).
President and Mrs. Obama have told us they are Christians and since God’s the one that checks their membership cards, not me, I’ll believe them. Therefore, I assume they know the real Christmas story and were perhaps playing it down to be more “inclusive” and not offend anyone by saying Christmas is about celebrating the birth of God’s son, Jesus Christ. Does that offend you? I’m so sorry (there’s the sarcasm).
But have you ever thought that as Christians, we’re just as guilty of contributing to the “softening” of the Christmas message? If we look around our own houses, are there more Santas, elves and reindeer than shepherds, angels and stars? Do we purchase Christmas music about Bethlehem or do we download “Christmas in the Trailer Park Again?” (Yes, it’s a real song. Look it up – no, wait, don’t).
I’m just as guilty because those dancing snowmen are really cute and my Beagle is adorable in her antlers, but maybe in the future I should be mindful of what I really focus on during the season.
For generations, my family has gathered and read aloud the 2nd chapter of Luke on Christmas morning. It sets our minds straight and helps us remember the symbolism of our gifts. Traditions like this are what Christians should focus on to teach our families the real meaning of the holiday instead of getting upset over society’s lack of accuracy. Perhaps then, the world will see us celebrating with such peace and joy that they too will crave a real, bona-fide baby Jesus, Mary and Joseph kind of Christmas.
But even if the kiddies only have the TV set for instruction, thanks to Charles Shultz, Linus will bail us out when he finally steps into the spotlight and sets everyone straight. Then, behold . . . he’ll still love the heck out of that tiny tree.
This story first appeared in The Baldwin Times.
I hope you repost this every year!
What a nice thought! Thanks so much Audrey!
Go tell it on the Mountain, really…this was an excellent message. Merry Christmas!
Thanks Beemie — love that song!
Merry Christmas to you!
Very well said, Leslie Anne, with your signature humor to sweeten up the message. I agree that too many people get offended — on all political sides. And that we should put our energy and talents to a positive use to spread true Christian love. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you and your family!
Thank you Dixie Darlin’! Merry Christmas to you too!
Just forwarded this to my FB! This a wonderful!! Oh, and I have made it a habit of getting Starbucks on Sunday mornings before church just to see if someone shoots their mouth off. So far, two have, and yes, they got an earful!!
Merry Christmas, Lovely!! I hope you and your family have a wonderful week.
Thanks for sharing the story on FB Lori! Merry Christmas to you!
I just read this out to the family and got back big smiles and some “I’ve never thought of it that way” comments. Thanks for some needed reminders presented in a white glove and saucy smile quintessential Leslie Anne personality!
Awww . . . thanks so much Dewena! Merry Christmas to your sweet family and you!
Thank you Leslie Anne, amen and I wish you and your family a very blessed Christmas!
Beautiful and well written. Thanks
Wow! This one really brought me to my knees. LITERALLY. You’ve summed up in one blog post the “true” approach to celebrating the real meaning of Christmas. My favorite line…”Are you upset that Starbuck’s paper cups didn’t have a Christmas message? Here’s an idea, read the Bible. It’s packed full of Christmas cheer, and throws in Easter for free.” You’ve said it all!
Thanks Karyn! Wasn’t that you I saw driving around listening to the Christmas in the Trailer Park song? Hahaha! Appreciate your nice comment!
Merry Christmas to you.
I kind of shook my head when my FB page exploded with people upset over the Starbucks cups. Really? Couldn’t your time be better well spent….A. Volunteering at a soup kitchen B. Buying a gift for a needy child for Toys For Tots…indeed I could go through the entire alphabet and beyond.
Now anyone who knows me, knows that I am a Christian. I even use my blog to share my faith every Sunday. But I am not upset at those who don’t. However, I will say that for those who are Christians I believe it is important to heed the words in the bible that we proclaim the Good News to others. The Obama’s could have said “No.” to the television spot but they chose to share a different message. Am I disappointed, Yes. But I choose to move forward and spread positivity verses negativity.
Good for you Laura. You have great ideas for how we should be the light of the world to others. Forget the cups and get busy people! Thanks for always having a bright spot on your blog, and thank you for reading!
Extremely well-said, Leslie. Thanks for this spot-on perspective!
Missing Fairhope, especially the weather, while in CO for several weeks… lots of snow…beautiful; insanely low temps (single digits, -2 “real feel” one morning)…not so much! Enjoying all the grands’ performances makes it all fun. White Christmases are so beautiful, but my Southern blood prefers those Southern temps!
Have a Blessed Christmas!
Until yesterday, it was still hot and humid here. It’s now in the 50 – 60° range, so it feels more like Christmas. Enjoy your time with family in the Christmas weather, and thanks so much for reading and the nice comment!
Thanks Arlene, and good wishes to you and yours!
Greetings of joy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Once again, you are so right on!
Thank you for your spirit and reminding us all of the real “Reason for the Season’.
May you and yours have a blessed Christmas,
I am laughing so hard and nodding my head yes,!, yes!, and Yes!!
And a Merry Christmas to you, Jess!
Beautifully said. And said as only a southern lady can! Thank you.
Thanks for reading Regena. Hope you have a wonderful Christmas!
Amen, and Amen!
Thanks Cindy. Merry Christmas!