Christmas In A Box! REALLY?

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We like things tied up in a nice, neat package – including the story of Christmas.

But is the story of Advent, the coming of Christ as the Light and Life into our dark and disordered world, really that neat?

We live in a culture, however, where we want “everything tied up in a nice box.” Whether it’s the ending of a movie, the conclusion to a novel, or the story of Christmas – we want God (and the ways of God) wrapped up in a nice, neat box, with a big, bright ribbon tied on top.

But that’s NOT the story of Christmas.

It Pulsates With

Intrigue…Mystery…Confusion…Awe…Uncertainty…

Miracles…Murder…Wonder…Puzzlement…Questions…Debate.

  • A virgin overtaken by the Holy Spirit and bearing a child?
  • A jealous king killing babies just to secure his own insecurity?
  • Angels appearing to shepherds at night?
  • God putting on skin and coming to earth as a human?
  • Three “wise men” miraculously following a star and finding a messiah?
  • A baby born in a stable and sleeping in a manger who later becomes a king?

Now that’s a lot of mystery!

Yet, sometimes, much of our Evangelical theology seems…Too processed. Too packaged. Too perfect.

It feels like we’ve removed much of the mystery.

We’ve become uncomfortable with the unexplainable. We’ve secularized the sacred.  We’ve packaged the invisible. We’ve domesticated the drama. We’ve merchandized the miraculous. We’ve sanitized the supernatural. We’ve humanized the divine.

My appeal to return to mystery and wonder isn’t a plea for an attitude of anti-intelligence in the Church. We don’t need more bad theology or stupid ways of thinking.  We have enough of that.

But after we’ve diced it, sliced it, parsed it, debated it, outlined it, preached it, and tried to explain it…

Let’s step back and once again embrace the mystery and the wonder of it all.

Amazed,
Ken L Roberts

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8 thoughts on “Christmas In A Box! REALLY?

  1. “We’ve become uncomfortable with the unexplainable. We’ve secularized the sacred. We’ve packaged the invisible. We’ve domesticated the drama. We’ve merchandized the miraculous. We’ve sanitized the supernatural. We’ve humanized the divine.” YES. YES. YES. YES. YES. YES. YES!!!! Great Post, Pastor Ken! I highly recommend the book “An Angel’s Story” by Max Lucado to help put the awe and wonder into Christmas again. I read it every year.

    • Michelle

      Thanks for the comment and the recommendation of the Max Lucado book. I’ll check it out. Since I’m not pastoring and therefore don’t have all the extra responsibilities of the Christmas season and services, I’m really “slowing down” this Christmas and deeply “chewing on the wonder of Christmas.”

      Love you guys. Tell Tim I said a big HELLO

      Ken

      • We love you too! You might have to buy a used copy. Otherwise, I think it is included as 1 of 4 books published in a compilation of his Christmas stories. But I REALLY think you’ll like “An Angel’s Story” a lot! ((HUGS))

  2. Wow! Brings you to self examine where you are in relationship with The Lord & to internalize the true meaning & advent of celebrating His birth. Your blog was written with knowledge of His life & with wisdom!
    Thanks Ken!

  3. Quite a “timely” post Pastor Ken. It’s time to learn the true significance to this event and how it relates to becoming aware of our true purpose in daily living. Blessed Christmas to All, Helen

  4. Though it is after Christmas that I have now read your blog, you are so right on about the mysteries, the awe, even the rawness of the intriguing events of Jesus’ birth. I have to say that as I continue to simplify, again, yet another Christmas, I can better appreciate the simple joys and peaceful moments of the season. Stillness and mindfulness enable God to get my attention in sometimes delicate, sometimes truly amazing ways. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and insights; it is refreshing to be able to “see” from another’s perspective.