Tinsel Rage

imagesYou’ve heard of Road Rage? Well, I have Tinsel Rage. What’s that, you may ask? It’s an uncontrollable anger, brought on by the pressure of the holiday. It’s named for Tinsel. Do you remember tinsel? I’m not sure if they even have it anymore. My wife outlawed it from our house years ago.

Tinsel– Strands of silver glitter that I used to take by the handful and toss against the tree. It would resemble clumps of wet spaghetti as it clung to the branches. Come to think of it, maybe that’s why my wife outlawed it.

Tinsel– Made from some type of metal (lead or aluminum) that your dad would ball up and shove into an empty socket on a string of Christmas lights, to complete the electric circuit, thus saving the set (and potentially burn the tree down).

Tinsel Rage. In the last couple of days it has overpowered me.

Last night, when I was trying to order Christmas gifts through the internet. The stupid company told me it was shipping the boxes to my old address. “No, you dumb computer,” I yelled at the top of my voice. It was midnight and I woke my wife. She stumbled out of the bedroom to find me sprawled across the living room floor, Ipad in hand, turning a shade of green that resembled more the Incredible Hulk than the festive Christmas color. With teeth grinding, I barely was able to stop myself from twisting the demon tablet into a pretzel and smashing it into the wall. “Change the address,” I hollered while punching at the screen. “Change the address!”

Thankfully, my wife talked me down. It’s amazing, but she seems immune to the powers of Tinsel Rage. She found the phone number of the company. At 12:30 AM, I was talking to the representative who was from some foreign land that didn’t celebrate Christmas. Hence they knew nothing of Tinsel Rage!

Today, between Bible study and visiting some shut-ins, I was trying to run a few quick errands on the limited amount of time that I had, knowing full well that the dreaded clock, registering the days left before Christmas, is ticking down. Why did the man get his car in the way of the cheap gas station and force me to drive on to the one that was three cents more per gallon? THREE CENTS MORE PER GALLON!!! Why did the people at the pumps park in all different directions and block me from getting in? Why did the two old men stand by their cars, after they were all done, chatting away, instead of moving!!? “MAY YOU BE BOILED IN YOUR OWN CHRISTMAS PUDDING!!”

I tell you right now, if I was the Incredible Hulk (the comic book character who morphs with his anger) the scream I let out in the confines of my car . . . the frustration I felt, would have changed me into a raving version of the grinch!

Tinsel Rage. A terrible thing.

Maybe it’s the pressure of our recent move. Trying to get the new house all set. Maybe it’s the impending weekend snow storm and the probability of a cancelled Sunday morning worship service. Maybe it’s the desire to have the perfect Christmas. All I know is I seem to be seeing red and turning green a little more than usual this year.

Charlie Brown had his depression at this time of year. I have my rage.

By the way, I’m feeling better now. Really. I am.

I think me and Charlie’s problem have the same solution. In the TV special (Charlie Brown’s Christmas), he asks, “Can’t anyone tell me what Christmas is all about?” Linus steps on the stage and says (I’m only going to quote part of the verses he spoke), “Then the angel said to them, Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying: Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, goodwill toward men! (Luke 2:10-14). That’s what Christmas is all about Charlie Brown.”

Do you get Tinsel Rage? Christmas Depression? Are you overwhelmed with the prep time of Christmas? Stressed about trying to buy the perfect gift?

Trying to do everything you feel you need to do before December 25th is like endeavoring to get two gallons of milk in a one gallon jug. It can’t be done.

Maybe you, like me, have taken your eye off of what it’s truly all about. Take a deep breath. Step back and see what the day is.

For unto you is born this day. . .a Saviour. . . Christ the Lord!

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