Christian Christmas, or not…

28 Dec

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Today was Christmas… and like everybody says, don’t forget the real reason for the season, C-H-R-I-S-T…

We celebrated today the wonderful gift of God  in Jesus and the salvation that is here for everyone who believes in Him. We try to celebrate Christmas in such a way that it reflects the true meaning of Noel, especially for our children.

For this year, we had my mum and Claude with us, Phil’s mum and Nico as usual. It was nice to have a ‘french tradition’ spin put on the meal affair. We had a proper french aperitif and starter directly from France with special toasts accompanied with champagne and excellent foie gras (some goose liver paté for the untrained, made in a quite barbaric way but with an irresistible taste, really…) My mum and Claude prepared that with great care and it was worth it.

Although we want to bring across the real meaning of Christmas to our kids, it was difficult this year with a double set of grandmas! It looked like orgies of gifts and food and I actually feel a bit embarrassed about the whole deal. I guess we hadn’t put enough thought into it before-hand. I did manage to read the Christmas story to the children and in spite of the numerous gifts calling their names at the foot of the tree, they didn’t want me to stop reading ( I did stop before the crucifixion story though 😉 ).

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They even had to have the photo session before opening their gift and it was close to torture for some…

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I was having this discussion with Phil, about me wanting to make sure that Christmas is undoubtedly and unmistakably Christian. Phil is much more ‘grounded’ than me on that type of things. We don’t ‘need’ to make it obviously Christian.

*The one reason is that if I want a Christmas that will be radically different from the non-Christian people, I will have to make some serious changes. I will have to can the Christmas tree, the food and the gifts altogether… We are willingly or unwillingly taking from our culture, especially the culture of Christmas that has infiltrated most western households. Being influenced by our culture is not wrong, as long as it doesn’t go against God’s word. So I enjoyed having some french food tradition tagged onto my dinner ( we had oysters the next day 🙂 and it tastes like snot! )

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*The second reason is that no matter what I do (or rather don’t do), that will never stop us from being Christian. We ARE Christians all throughout the year. My house looks different on the 12th of December, on the 24th of December and on the 4th of January. By God’s grace (and God’s grace only) my behaviour is different, my motives are different, my relationships are different. To celebrate Christmas the Christian way, I don’t need to do special things, or abstain from certain things to show,or witness of my love for Christ.

So after sorting out these thoughts for myself, I got over my fear and disappointment that my Christmas was not Christian enough. I am eternally grateful to God for showing me who Jesus really is. I’m thankful that with his help I can live a life that is honouring to him, in spite of my sinfulness, through His forgiveness. I am thankful that my children can witness our life, drowned in God’s Grace, in (Christmas) season and out of season.

Next year, I might want to go the whole nine yards and do nothing but go to church on Christmas eve, and I will be as Christian as I was this year. For 2008, we had  a lovely evening and it was very special to have my mum and Claude, as well as Mamma and Nico! We did have quite a lot of gifts, for little people and big people too!

Book for the bookworm,

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Elegant Tinker-Bell-Princess-Fairy,

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And some less elegant divers,

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Pour tous les amis et la famille en France, si vous avez lu jusqu’ici, félicitations et Joyeux Noel a tous!!!!

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2 Responses to “Christian Christmas, or not…”

  1. Debbie December 29, 2008 at 10:44 pm #

    I have been thinking about how to do that for next year and today I thought of maybe having a birthday cake with candles on it and singing Happy Birthday to Jesus! I don’t know if that would be appropriate but according to Niave – it aint a birthday if there aint candles! So it would be one way of getting the message about what we are actually celebrating across to her!!
    Well, we have a whole 12 months to think about it so no need to stress right now. Maybe at book club we can have a brainstorm and come up with a whole list of interesting ideas by December 2009!!??

  2. Taryn December 28, 2008 at 8:42 pm #

    thanks for a good post on perspective. so very true, especially for families who can’t escape the pagan-ness of Christmas. thanks for that, for this is something we struggle with too. Thankfully, we can make our own family Christmas time more in line with what we want for the kids in terms of Christ-centred, but at the same time, thankfully it doesn’t really matter that we have to do pagan Christmasses too, because, as you say, it doesn’t change who we are and what Jesus did! 🙂 THANKS!!!!

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