Tuesday, December 25, 2007

(Secular) Christmas Morning

Well, today is Christmas Day. It's a good day with family and, after the last few weeks of hectic religious activity now behind me, it was nice to actually relax. In reality, I'd love it if Baptists typically would have a liturgy of communion on Christmas Day - but it's not in-grained into people to do that. So, I threw the liturgy (sans communion which makes no sense, but even I know when it's a good idea not to cause people's heads to explode - I'll do that next year) on Christmas Even and let Christmas Day just be a "secular" Christmas - meaning, other than typical prayers we just enjoyed the American Rituals we call Christmas, but actually aren't.

I'm not sure how I feel about that - but I'm also pretty dang sure I needed a sabbath so I'm not losing any sleep over it either. Oh well, I'm also a liturgically minded pastor called to a Baptist Church where liturgy and frequent Communion is what "Catholics do, " I don't expect to make sense.

Anyway, this year was the year of the video game in our little secular ritual. The wii really is a remarkable console in that so many of the games are just no fun without another person playing along. It's the best feature of the system, and well-done. Once I get a chance to play a bit more, I'll have to do a full review, but I have to say that Super Mario Galaxy just plain rocks, and Star Wars Lego: Complete Saga is insanely fun (couldn't get my son to play with me however, he was too busy enjoying his pokemon figures, and then he spent a couple of hours playing legos - my daughter then build a lego house out of the same set - I love how my kids actually have an imagination). At this point, I've not even Played Twilight Princess yet, it's a bit more "mature" than the other games we got - and with so many people aroun dwho wants to play a single-player game when you can play a multiplayer version of ping-pong?

While the Wii kept us busy, I have to say that best gift given to our family was a calendar created by my mother-in-law. She took a bunch of photos that were appropriate for each month, and mounted them in a calendar with a gift-card in each month for a place our family likes to eat. The thought that went into it had to be nuts, and the time even more so. Sometimes the best gifts are the ones with not much "flash," but a ton of creativity and love.

Anyway, my secular Christmas ritual is over - not that I ever laid it aside, but it's time for me and mines to realign our focus on the awesomeness of the Incarnation - which is what this season celebrates.

So, thanks fore the gifts folks, I hope the bring our family together some more so we can build up the trust to give of ourselves away in Christ.

Merry Christmas.

BTW: I'm not using "secular" in the bogey-man sense, I'm just pointing out that the rituals we do on Christmas morning have no Christian depth to them at

1 comment:

CoderForChrist said...

Well, you know, that's not entirely different from the way the Orthodox seem to do things, as far as Christmas morning seems to be concerned. Our Liturgy is at midnight (we started with Compline and Matins at 10pm, and I think the Liturgy actually started a little before midnight). Since we'd been fasting, we usually have a feast after Liturgy, though this year it was just cookies and eggnog (yum!).

And, so, my Christmas day was playing with toys, hanging out with families, etc.

Honestly, I wouldn't say my Christmas day lacked any 'Christian depth.' I mean, sure, we didn't spend the day praying, or going to church, or doing any 'Christian' stuff, but, well, we spent time with family, we gave gifts to each other, and we even did normal, everyday things. And, ya know, Christianity encompasses all of that, too.