This past Saturday morning was Xmas. I had the following thought when I woke up.
Xmas is a time where Christians show good will to one another, give charity, spend time with their familes, invite guests, worship together and sit down to a big meal. Despite its pagan origins (Mithra, the Roman Kalends, Saturnalia and Nordic Solstice festivals) and present day (no pun intended) consumerism, no one can say rightfully speak ill of those things that I listed above.
The sad thing: Thousands of secular Jewish children either woke up to open their presents or envied their Christian friends as they opened theirs. Let's face it. Xmas is everywhere and it is hard for many Jews.
But should it be?
These Jewish Children have been robbed. They have been robbed of a heritage. They have been robbed of a religion. They have been robbed of an intimate connection to the Holy One that their ancestors; prophets, kings and priests had.
How can I say this? This Saturday was not only Xmas. It was also Shabbos. EVERY WEEK religious Jews show good will to one another, spend time with their familes, invite guests, worship together and sit down to a big meal. During the week they give charity and pray three times a day to their Creator. Every week thousands of Jews give to and deliver for Tomchei Shabbos which delivers food to the needy EVERY WEEK.
Good will and living a holy life is not seasonal.
So I say to the young Jew out there who is taken in by the "Season," look inward to your own people and see what a wonderful gift Hashem has given you. Don't begrudge Christians their holiday by making it "happy holidays" or "Season Greetings." Don't demand a menorah where there is a tree (the menorah being the ultimate symbol of Jewish identity and refusal to assimilate). Rather be proud of you you are and seek the Truth of your people, your nation, your faith. Wish your Christian friends a Merry Christmas and understand that it is not for you.
On a related note: This New Years Eve is Friday night.
You will find me at home, showing good will, spending time with my family, inviting guests, worshiping with my bretheren and sitting down to a big meal.
Good Shabbos/Shabbat Shalom.