You see, what we believe shapes our behaviours and this is perhaps more evident at Christmas than at any other point of the year. There are so many competing narratives that tell us what Christmas is really about – each with their own set of behaviours. Some tell us that Christmas is about maintaining childlike innocence and wonder, others that it’s about presents, others that it’s about family and loved ones, others that it’s about caring for those who have less than we do, and yet others that it’s just supposed to be the most wonderful year
The problem is that we don’t usually discern these as different answers, so we try to do the behaviours appropriate to each of them and we end up spending too much money, trying to cram in too many social engagements, stressing out as we try to make this day extra, extra special, and on it goes.
The birth of Jesus invites us into a different set of behaviours and a different experience of Christmas. It is the meaning of Jesus’ birth, and the hope it brings, and the implications for how we celebrate at Christmas that we want to explore this December. I trust that as we turn again to the meaning of Jesus’ birth that we might find a less silly way to engage with all the expectations of the Christmas season. I think you’ll agree with me that we certainly need it!