gratitude & hoopla: Christmas Jeer (2)

gratitude & hoopla

"Nothing taken for granted; everything received with gratitude; everything passed on with grace." G. K. Chesterton


Christmas Jeer (2)

Really, I'm not just plumping for my kid's blog, but Nate at Eight Strings has been serving up some stimulating food for thought lately. Oh, a bit intemperate perhaps, but what blogger among us will dare be the first to throw THAT stone? Nate's latest installment: The Containment of Christmas, part 4. A few gems:
Since we Christians find it so easy to fire burning arrows at Ramadan, Kwanzaa, and pagan Solstice celebrations, then we will no doubt welcome the offensive the Son of God has launched on the battleground within, setting fire to the citadel containing the things we most love this time of year: our soapbox reclamation of the holidays. Our fakery of goodwill and mock concern for the homeless. Our smirking declarations that “tis better to give than to receive.” And everything else that, when boiled down, amounts to a scrambling effort to earn a seat beside the manger.
Oh how about this one:
The problem, as we all suspected, was never with the trappings of Christmas. Or commercialization and overspending. Or campy renditions of popular carols. Or the disappearance of Christian symbols from public property. The problem was, is, and always will be with our deceitful and wicked hearts.
In the end, Nate is putting this thing we call Christmas, so laced as it is with the stuff of several kingdoms, into an eternal perspective, the perspective of the Kingdom, the perspective of Christ triumphant. He reminds us that it never was about our working up some sort of pleasant seasonal "spirit", and that we are neither to measure Christmas by the yardstick of culture (manger scenes in the public square), nor by the yeardstick of our own feelings (nostalgic glow, warm fuzzies in response to appropriately traditional carols, etc.). Instead of a cultural/religious idol called Christmas, which each year we incessantly defend against all questioning, we should let the babe in the manger question us!

I'll end this post the same way Nate ended his: Fall on your knees.


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