So its christmas and I’ve decided I’m a scrooge. I just don’t like it, I can’t deal with the tinsel, I hate the christmas music on constantly in clothes stores, I can’t deal with carols and hate the carol singers even more. I don’t like carol services nor midnight mass nor nativity plays nor any church related christmas service I can think of and I can’t deal with the twee feeling and all the santa’s grottos. I watched a Smallville Christmas special a while ago. Clark had to skip some of his christmas party to deliver presents to poor children for Chloe. He sees someone dressed as santa about to kill himself because the ‘true meaning of christmas’ has been forgotten. Clark explains to santa that he’s been delivering presents instead of going to a party and the santa decides life is worth living. Santa then goes to Chloe and helps her deliver the presents but he does it instantly. Could that have been the real Santa??? EURGH!
Yeah Christmas specials are definitely one of the things I hate the most!
However, I’m really just messing around. It’s really because I’m a christian, and a particular type of christian. Now some people dislike christmas because they say that actually it was a roman festival of worship of the sun god. They say that christians just high-jacked a pagan festival and that actually the roots of christmas are evil. We still use symbols that clearly have nothing to do with Jesus such as the christmas Tree, holly and the yule Log. However I don’t really care about that, in fact I like that imagery. There used to be days devoted to the devil, and like Jesus is redeeming the world through his church he has redeemed some holidays.
Many thought that I’d find it difficult being a Christian studying Physics with Philosophy. They thought I’d have to keep my head low. But actually it’s great. The fact that my views are so obviously antagonistic to the majority of the people around me allows for far more interesting discussion. I don’t get into arguments that much because people never really feel a need to prove themselves to me or prove me wrong. I’m a christian, I regularly talk to an invisible man, I’m crazy so then so what if I disagree with their view on dating? It’s great, at uni I can just talk about my views, my faith and my God. I find I get into way more arguments with people who sort-of agree with me… such as with other christians!
But then Christmas comes and ruins all that. Suddenly everyone is sucked into the lovely cute feeling of Christmas. There is talk of the “true meaning of Christmas”, about ‘universal love’, ‘hope’, ‘peace and Goodwill to all humankind’. As a christian its like I’m expected to go along with that. I’m expected to be happy because people who normally are totally against my views spend one holiday of being more ‘christian like’. I’m a Christian, I like hope, shouldn’t I be happy that everyone else is getting into it? NO! No no no no no. This is my main problem with Christmas. The Christmas everyone else celebrates is worlds apart from the christmas I celebrate. They talk about hope but what are they hoping for? Christianity is not about an abstract of feeling of hope that helps us get through the day. The hope is in Christ.
In fact its all about Jesus. We don’t just hope, we hope in Christ. We don’t want an abstract universal love, we want God’s perfect love poured into us so it overflows to those around us, it’s love but its love that starts with Jesus. We’re not looking for general good will to all men we’re either looking for God’s goodwill to all men or more specically God’s will to all men! If you remove the Christ from Christmas you don’t get something that is almost like what I believe. You end up with something abhorrant to me. I’m not into niceness, I’m not into being moral, I’m not into hope and peace nor am I into good will to all men. I’m searching for freedom from those horribly constraining things, I’m searching for freedom from morality and guilt, from niceness and feeling held back and from needing to hypocritically put on a facade of goodwill to people I hate and fortunately I’ve found that freedom. I’ve found it in Jesus and I’ve found it in his death and ressurection. From him I no longer need to worry about being nice, I just become like he wants me to, I don’t need to worry about what people think of me because Jesus loves me, and I don’t need to worry about trying to like people I hate because God shows me everyone through his eyes, his sons and daughters and my brothers and sisters.
So I put on an act of being like scrooge. It is easier to tell people I don’t know very well that I hate christmas specials then to tell them that I think that they are hoping in nothing. (Having said all that, I really really do hate christmas specials… and carols)