More Than Consumers

Ugh. How many more shopping days til Christmas?

In a few years, I think the 12 Days of Christmas will be renamed the 12 Days of Shopping for Christmas. We have Black Friday, which has mysteriously overtaken much of Thursday, a day we have traditionally referred to as Thanksgiving Day (if you’re unsure of the historicity behind Thanksgiving, find all your answers here). Saturday is now known as “Small Business Saturday,” and today is “Cyber Monday.”

Are you aware that tomorrow is now being referred to as “Green Tuesday?” From what I understand it’s a great opportunity to save some serious green by purchasing, uh, green items you’ve always wanted but might not have known existed and couldn’t afford previously but now you can during this once in a lifetime annual one-day sale weeklong sale… wait, does any of this ring a bell?

Well, all this shopping has got me thinking. We are bombarded with messages telling us we need this and we can’t live without that. At the core of these messages is the view that you and I are no more than consumers. The sad thing is you hear something enough, and you begin to believe it.

I like to consume things (like bacon!). I need to consume things (like bacon?).

But I am more than a consumer, and Christmas is not about consumption (just to set the record straight, it is actually supposed to be a birthday party for Jesus).

This year our church is participating in something called “Advent Conspiracy.” The basic idea is to divert some of our traditional Christmas spending towards a legit need, i.e. instead of buying Aunt Bertha another sweater with a cat on it, we donate that amount of money to an organization that feeds kids literally starving to death.

We are partnering with Kids Against Hunger, and if you’d like to help us reach our goal, shoot me an email. Here’s a video that details the absolute brilliance behind Advent Conspiracy. If your church doesn’t already do something like this during the Christmas season, there’s no time like the present