so this is Christmas... i love it! i'm all about the incarnation. i get rather patristic here and prefer Christmas over Good Friday in my theology. In the Eastern Orthodox churches, it is the incarnation where everything changes, not Good Friday. many of us would do well to hold these two in balance as it centers more on the LIFE of Christ rather than the death. As SVS stated so eloquently "the death is meaningless unless the life was one worth noting." or something similar to that.. i'm sure he'll correct me ;-)
Anywho, i was just reflecting on the many claims of Christians that some how "happy holidays" is an attack on Christmas. It even inspired "Advent Conspiracy" which is all about less consuming and more worshiping, after all "Jesus is the reason for the season."
i would contest that.
Jesus isn't the reason for the season, MARKETING Jesus is the reason for the season. Biblically, the time when shepards watch over their flocks by night would be when there are little lambs running around, which would be in the spring. so technically, Easter and Christmas would be a few weeks apart. but this idea also ignores another reason for the season... blending in and subverting.
Pagans had their own holidays going on during this time, and Christians wanted to blend it so to avoid persecution and yet they made it their own... taking the symbols of the season, like the Yule Log, Evergreen Tree, and feasting and making them their own. instilling them with new meaning.
i like this idea. i like that the reason for the season has multiple layers for the church. for me it shows that the church is not an enclave of refugees from the world; it is the sacrament of God's presence in the world by the Mystery of the incarnation. It's not supposed to look as little like the world as possible but as much like the world as it can manage. Otherwise, the world will never be able to recognize anything that the church is doing. it is both fully secular and fully sacred and therefore we are unable to make any distinction between the two.
how cool is that?!
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. May it be filled with blessing, good conversation, and warm connections within your family and community.
oh.. and i really LOVE Advent Conspiracy, check out all the cool things it's doing: