I am typically not that crazy about Christmas…I generally hate listening to Christmas carols even 1 day before December 1st, but for some reason this year I am excited for all that Christmas brings with it…the baking, the family stuff (maybe not alllllllll of the family events), the rosy cheeks, hot chocolate, decorations and general merriment.
I struggle with the capitalist underpinnings of the holiday and have spent a lot of time stressed out thinking about how to make Christmas everything it’s supposed to be.
In my opinion it’s pretty easy to come up with a list of things that Christmas in NOT meant to be:
– a time to go to the mall
– a time to go into debt
– a time to buy more junk
– a time to experience stress, chaos and last minute gift buying
– a time to further separate the rich and the poor
In light of these things, I have tried really hard to make Christmas about love, grace, giving and receiving and about creativity.
I don’t NEED ANY MORE STUFF. Last year I told my mom that I under NO CIRCUMSTANCES wanted her to buy me any gifts.
Do you know what happened… (of course not, you weren’t there…so I will tell you).
She CRIED. Not because she was soo happy that her anti-consumerism-when-it-suits-me daughter finally got it but rather, because I was robbing her of the JOY of blessing me.
It’s complicated, eh?
So, this year there will be more wading through family traditions and continuing some great ones (matt and i always make each other gifts– matt’s gifts to me turn out magical, my homemade gifts either a. FAIL or b. are completed by grandma).
One thing I know for sure, is that myself, my friends and my family aren’t the ones who are in need this Christmas…ironically, we will all (I’m sure) recieve a lot of material gifts despite the fact that we already have too much stuff.
Last lent a few of us participated in Water Challenge and it was hard and good and such a learning experience (don’t worry, this year I will be drinking coffee EVERY DAY during lent). What made water challenge SO MUCH better was that I didn’t do it alone. People joined me…and it was such a privilege to be able to participate in a challenge like that with people I love and respect.
So, for Christmas this year I thought a few people might be interested in joining together to give to those in need this Christmas. I made a quick poll but would LOVE LOVE to hear other suggestions. Let’s not make this Christmas about us- let’s be really generous. I love Rob Bell’s saying “when I honour the image of God in others, I protect the image of God in myself.” Let’s give because it’s right and just and in doing so, I think we’ll be given more than we give…if you know what I mean.
So– FILL OUT THE POLL.