I've worked retail for forever it seems. Okay. That was an exaggeration. I have worked retail the last five years not counting the summer I worked at K-Mart. That is besides the point. Man, I get off-track so easily. The point is retail is horrible during Christmas time. It has a way of sucking the Christmas spirit right out of you. I worked at Wal-mart for three of the last five years and, let me tell you, the big, happy, smiley face is a big ol' lie.
Now, there are other reasons I've been a Scrooge during Christmas seasons. Snow is a huge one of those reasons. I'm perfectly content with having a warm Christmas. Call me crazy. I've seen what it's like to have a sunny Christmas and it's not all that bad. White Christmases are overrated thanks to Bing Crosby's song.
All of that aside, I have found myself in total Christmas mode this year. I am stoked about Christmas! Not only about the gifts and all that mumbo-jumbo, but also about the true meaning behind it. I have gotten most of my Christmas shopping done already so that I can focus on the birth of the Savior. In one of Tori Amos' songs on her new Christmas album (which is fantastic) she calls the Savior's birth "our salvation's hour." Angels, I'm sure we were among their number, rejoiced at the birth of Christ as it marked the beginning of our redemption.
At Deseret Book I see the commercialized side of the Savior's birth. Nothing against the book store. We sell good stuff that do good for people. It just tends to make the Nativity scene less special when you are surrounded by it all the time. So I am making a greater effort to be more awed by them and to concentrate on the true meaning of Christmas. It will be no easy task with customers who are stressed out about Christmas, grumpy coworkers who need to take chill pills, and hearing the same Christmas songs over and over and over...and over...and over...and...oh...You get the picture.
So I challenge you, dear reader, to focus on the beautiful story of a virgin mother who gave birth to a Son who would grow up to be our Salvation. Focus on the intricacies of the story: how Joseph must have felt when he found out his betrothed was pregnant, how Mary must have felt when she first received the visit from the angel, and how both of them felt when they first laid eyes on the baby Jesus.
One last thing before I close this monstrous rambling post.
This last Sunday I woke up to Sounds of Sunday. Glen Rawson was talking about the story of Mary, Joseph, and baby Jesus. At first it was a nice little Christmas story, and I was half-asleep so I was just barely listening. Then he started talking about when Christ died, there was only Mary there. Glen Rawson said it really well. He said that the absence of Joseph shows that Christ can empathize with us in EVERY aspect of our lives including the loss of loved ones. This, of course, made me think about my sister and I got kinda weepy, but that is besides the point.
I refuse to get too caught up in the retail side of Christmas this year. Instead, I want this to be about my Savior who I know empathizes with me in all my trials and heartaches.
This won't be the last post this month but I just want to say:
Jake Taylor graduated from Brigham Young University-Idaho with a Bachelor of Arts degree in professional writing. He is the author of The Tales of the Unluckiest Lucky Girl series. He is also an avid reader, traveler, movie-watcher, and music lover. He currently serves in the US Navy and is stationed in San Diego, CA.