Rose and I have been going to church for nearly a year now – and we were pretty much the last people that Jesus would appeal to, although we came from basically Christian backgrounds (albeit non practising).
But this year I’ve been reading some interesting books, since developing an interest in Jesus and coming to accept that he existed and was the Son of God. The ones I’ve been reading go through historical detail about when, where and how he existed, and why it’s extremely unlikely that the whole thing was made up. They convinced me (in the end!)
There’s too many to list and that’s not really the point of this entry anyway (though if anyone really wants to check out some interesting angles on Christianity it’s worth looking at Rob Bell’s Nooma.com because he’s the one that really sums it all up nicely.
But as a result of our change of mind, we’ve noticed how little Christmas is about Christ any more! I’m not convinced that Jesus ever grew a white beard (he didn’t live long enough) nor wore gumboots and a bright red uniform. Reindeers aren’t particularly popular in Jerusalem nor Nazareth and there’s probably very little requirement for sleighs.
Is it a coincidence that Santa is an anagram of Satan? Designed to take our minds off the true meaning of Christmas with distracting bright colours and meant to put more and more money into the pockets of chainstores and online shopping companies, instead of where it should go – to the needy of the world.
Anyone notice that Satan is generally depicted in red too?
Take a few moments this year to remember the true message of Christmas – and if you’re going to celebrate it at all, then you ought to remember why. Peace and goodwill to all men. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength, and Love your neighbour as yourself.
That’s the strongest message Jesus brought to the world, remember that at Christmas when you’re fighting with your in-laws over who gets the biggest bit of turkey. Remember that when you’re miffed at your mum and dad because they didn’t get you that bright shiny present you’ve seen advertised since September.
Whether you like Jesus or not – whether you believe in Jesus or not – the message he brings to the world would make it a significantly better place if we could all remember it a bit more often. We’re all neighbours (regardless of religion) so please at Christmas time, let’s remember to love each other as ourselves.
It does take some effort to keep in mind what Christmas is supposed to be about.
We have never done Santa in our family. We give gifts to our children,,,but they are from us not "Santa". We couldn’t stand the thought of telling them all about Santa and then some day telling them it was all pretend. We always wondered would the day come when they’d ask if Jesus was pretend too. But we know and love and get along with plenty of people that "do Santa" too.
One friend that doesn’t do Santa at Christmas does do a "St Nick day" around the 9th of December (the real St Nick’s borthday). Telling St Nick’s true story of charity,,,but not equating him with Jesus.
It is exciting to me to hear of you and Rose learning more about Jesus. He is the reason for Christmas (and everything else!).
God bless y’all,,,and as our preacher likes to say Merry CHRISTmas!
Christmas has never been about Christ for me, or my family, neither has it been about the presents. For us it is a time of year when we all make the effort to be free to spend time talking, reminiscing, and enjoying the company of our loved ones.
Given I make most of the presents I give out each year (I hate lining the pockets of retail giants as much as you!), the presents become just another part of the expression of love and caring that the time of year represents to us.
(having said that, the few days off work is also a nice bonus!!)
I have to say from where you came from having your spiritual advisor doing your readings and whatnot, to hear you’re attending church IS a big change. A good one at that. I will say that attending church doesn’t change you; it’s what happens to your heart that changes you.
We do Santa in our house but we have always said that Santa is real because my husband is Santa and Santa is about giving and making other’s happy.
I’m sure you still celebrate Santa for your little girl. My son is probably on his last couple of years of believing in Santa, and so I’m just going to enjoy it while I can. I must add my son loves Jesus and god and talks to them everyday….that’s a boy who knows what God is all about.
I think you and Rose actively pursuing the teachings of Jesus and going to church is wonderful. Going to church DOES change you (just as your heart and mind changes) because it gives you a "family" of people who worship as you do and will support you as you continue to grow in your relationship with the Lord. Its important to have that network of support and friendship. Wonderful!!
Have a wonderful day!
How is your friend, Selena? Has she improved any? Take care and have a great weekend!