Frayed around the edges?This month is probably one of many extremes. Amidst the glitz and glamour, we find loneliness and despair; amidst the spending and shopping, we find poverty and debt; amidst the eating and partying, we find hunger and hardship.

It’s easy to focus on the frivolity and the fun, the bright lights and the party atmosphere; but when you start to look more closely, you often find that it’s all a bit frayed around the edges. It’s not that we want to stop all the fun, and the partying, and the eating, and the dancing, and the presents and the gifts; but let’s not forget the struggle of others, as we go about our ways this Christmas.

Society is often summed up in our soaps. No – not the kind you use in the bath, but the TV soaps, such as Coronation Street, for example. The attitude of many at Christmas was summed up in Roy Cropper’s statement:

“I don’t know why we should foist Judeo-Christian religion onto our Christmas tree…”

He sums up many people’s anti-religious approach to Christmas. Why can’t we just enjoy Christmas without having to hear about or talk about religion?

It begs the question, where do people really think Christmas started? What’s it all about? Of course, the Christ in Christmas should be a bit of a give away, but many people change it to Xmas – but even they forget that they still have to include the Cross! (X being the cross, in case you don’t get it!)

The truth is, most people just think of Christmas as a time of glitz and glamour, spending and shopping, and eating and partying. But the whole essence of Christ’s message can be summed up in the second most important commandment according to Christ himself:

“Love your neighbour as yourself.”

Matthew 22:39

So, as you enjoy the glitz and glamour, the spending and shopping, and the eating and partying, spare a thought for your neighbour. They may be feeling a little frayed around the edges during this season, so spare them a thought. Why not drop a few extra pennies in the charity tins in the shops you visit; why not give a little extra food to the Food Bank; or why not spend some time with someone who may be a little lonely this Christmas?

And if you are one of those who are feeling frayed around the edges this Christmas, be assured that you are not alone! Christ was born for you, and He died for you. He left His Spirit for you – the true gift of Christmas for you.