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There has been a lot of dialogue in the Evangelical world in recent years about a war on Christmas. The cry was to say “Merry Christmas” in defiance to something like “Seasons Greetings” or “Happy Holidays.” Regardless of the words we use, the war on Christmas is fed from lawsuits to remove civic-sponsored Nativity Scenes and school prohibitions about mentioning the Jesus of Christmas. However problematic the external forces of our society press against a Christ-centered Christmas, it may be our in-house disregard of Advent that sets us back. Could our fight for Christmas be a fight against Advent?
Advent traditionally is a focus on the waiting for the coming of Christ, making it even more difficult to translate to a secular world than simply a baby being born. Is the fight secular Santa with shopping versus Jesus and public nativity scenes? Or, could we be pitting a shallow Christmas glee against the poignant focus on a child born to make an ultimate sacrifice? Light set against the dark defies the sugar syrup of sentimental Christmas story re-tellings. Having produced many Christmas seasonal services over the years, the tension to deepen the idea of the Incarnation pushes back on the cry to feel the saccharine vibe of candy canes. We feed the beast of sentimentality as a means but might be losing something vital in the process.
Santa - Way - Cool - Way - Culture
I actually think Santa is “way cool,” by the way. Celebrating along with our culture and society a season of hope and giving makes for a needed connection. Those who are not church goers need to know most of us like a lot of the same things and that our point is...
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