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Our View: And a Merry Christmas to all!

Christmas is here and we hope our readers take time to enjoy the season with family and friends.

Christmas can mean different things to many people. Ways to celebrate the holiday include shopping, Santa Claus, gifts, parties, decorations -- the list goes on. The fact remains that Christmas is the celebration of the birth of Christ.

However, think about it! If you dropped in from another planet to study Christmas, you might reach the conclusion that people -- at least in America -- are celebrating two completely different holidays. Is the holiday to celebrate Santa Claus, or the birth of Christ? Some may see it as an awkward fit. There is very little overlap between these two Christmases, even though they occupy the same space at the same time.

The good news is, somehow the celebrations manage to co-exist. In the proper context, the "Santa Claus Christmas" and the "Jesus Christ Christmas" find ways to touch most every life.

Few of us seem to mind the holiday's split personality. Somehow it all works. We embrace it nostalgically and enthusiastically. We feel joy and peace at Christmas because the holiday glows with the spirit of giving and the appreciation of family and good tidings.

The purpose of the holiday, however, is to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ and the impact his life has had on the lives of Christians. Of course, Santa and gifts can be a wonderful part of the celebration, but there is no arguing as to what the holiday truly commemorates.

Along with honoring the birth of Christ, however, we can use the season to show our appreciation for our family and friends and share a spirit of good will towards all. Let's employ the spirit of generosity and love and give thanks for the wonderful opportunities and wealth we enjoy. Even with the problems we face as a nation, Americans still enjoy a lifestyle that the majority of people in the world can only dream of.

Our next project should be the effort to capture the Christmas spirit during the other days throughout the year. In the weeks, months and years ahead we should attempt to treat people with the same attitude we see during the Christmas season -- that would make the world a better place!.

Have a great Christmas and find some time to celebrate and experience the real meaning of Christmas and the spirit it represents.

Merry Christmas to all!