The finale of the LEGO Star Wars Advent Calendar. Thanks for reading these posts the past few weeks. It’s been fun for me. I hope it’s been a blessing to you.
Christmas Eve, and what do we have? Of course it is Darth Maul in a Santa suit.
Darth Maul as Santa Claus. This is the LEGO model on Christmas Eve of the LEGO Star Wars Advent calendar. Perfect. It represents the modern Christmas spirit in so many ways.
To those who haven’t seen The Phantom Menace, Darth Maul was a Sith apprentice who was bent on killing the Jedi and taking down the Republic. He is evil. So, on a day when most advent calendars place baby Jesus in the manger, we get Darth Maul in a Santa suit. All that’s missing is him drinking a Coke.
There are a number of angles I could go with this. I’ll go with a theme that is shared seemingly every Christmas now, but approach it from a different angle.
Want to bring “Christ” back into Christmas? Act like Christ would. That’s a good start, and would probably make more of a difference.
Every year I hear Christians bemoan the fact that Christ is taken out of Christmas. “Jesus is the reason for the season!” Okay, so what do our actions reflect then for those of us who proclaim Jesus?
This is my favorite time of the year, and I enjoy the trappings with the holiday. I start playing Christmas songs early. I watch Christmas movies. I enjoy the candies, the colors and creativity with the season.
That being said…
If we are so adamant about Jesus being forefront, why is greed, lust, jealousy, gluttony and wrath on display by many? Black Friday is a joke. People run up debt. We gorge on food. Materialism is what many seem to follow, not Jesus. We crave what we do not have, whether the latest Apple gadget or clothing item. Relationships are strained. People don’t look forward to spending time with family. (Happy holidays!)
Many who say they want Jesus to be front and center at Christmas, only want Jesus on their terms. As long as Jesus doesn’t infringe on their identity, comfort and sin, it’s good to say “Jesus is the reason for the season”.
Bumper sticker Christianity. Nice soundbites that have no depth.
We can all put more “Christ” back into Christmas if we so choose. But we don’t. We want someone else to do it for us. Just like we want our government, or pastor, or school, or local non-profit to do the responsibility we are suppose to do. We want to legislate Christianity and impose it on everyone.
But if this is going to be a Christian Nation that doesn’t help the poor, either we’ve got to pretend that Jesus was just as selfish as we are, or we’ve got to acknowledge that he commanded us to love the poor and serve the needy without condition…and then admit that we just don’t want to do it. –Stephen Colbert
That was never Jesus’ plan. We are to be his representative to the world. We are to show the world God’s love. And, when I say “we”, I mean everyone who believes in Jesus. Yes, your faith is a personal thing, but it was never meant to be private. That’s not what God intended.
You can still enjoy the trappings of Christmas, but in proper context. More importantly, be Jesus to someone. Maybe it’s making a donation so someone can have a meal, clean water, safety from violence, or something else. Maybe you help a neighbor by shoveling their sidewalk. Maybe you show someone friendship who hasn’t experienced it. Maybe you love your kids better. Maybe you show love to someone else’s kids who have never known it.*
Christians get upset at the depiction of them, but so what? What are we going to do? Complain about it, or do something to reverse that thinking? Are we loving our neighbor? Are we being the Good Samaritan to someone in need? Are we fighting for justice?
We say we don’t like how advertisers, companies and whatever else has hijacked Christmas. We say we don’t like how Christmas is now called “winter holiday” or something else. We say a bunch of things we don’t like, but do our actions back that up?
Want Christ back in Christmas? Do it yourself. Be Christ to someone this Christmas. That is more of the spirit, and reason, for Christmas.
And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!” —Luke 2:8-14 (ESV)
Bring life and/or hope to someone this Christmas. Let them know there is more to this holiday than what we’ve become accustomed to. That Christ loved them so much he came to Earth two thousand years ago, as a baby, so they could experience life and love the way God intended.