Monday, December 24, 2007
Yes, Virginia, There is a Christmas
Oh dear! I just dropped by to see all the lovely Christmas greetings and found this:
I need help with a question my friend asked me today. If anybody would have an answer, I figured it would be you.....
My friend asked me to show her where in the Bible Jesus tells us what day he was born on and where in the Bible he tells us to celebrate it every year. Ive looked and looked and looked but cant find it anywhere.
I normally use the Jerusalem or Douay Bible, but I even looked in the King James and also used a concordance at the library but I just cant find where it is.
Please help me, Sister, cause Im sure you know the answer. Id really like to show it to her tomorrow, being Christmas and all.
Thank you very much.
Lucky for you, I am a night owl.
The answer may well disappoint you. You can't find it, because it's simply not there. The New Testament says so very little about the birth of Jesus and almost nothing whatsoever about His life before He set off in His sandals at age 30. Probably quietly building kitchen tables for the good people of Nazareth until then. The Stradivariuses of kitchen tables, no doubt.
Jesus doesn't to tell us to celebrate anything whatsoever that I can think....only the Mass. "Do this in remembrance of Me." That's it.
So along with Christmas, out goes Easter. Certainly Halloween has to go. That is only a celebration of people saved by Jesus anyhow. That and embarrassing costumes. So long.
We choose to celebrate Christmas because, as my old friend said, we're so glad Jesus was born. We extend the love God showed us to each other by giving each other gifts. I think of them as birthday gifts, since Jesus did ask us to see Him in each other.
It's not rocket science. If your friend doesn't want to get on the bandwagon, well, more eggnog for you! As long as she's on the bandwagon with Jesus, we'll drink a toast to Jesus for her.
I have a hunch she's not Catholic. Which means she's missed the bandwagon and has hopped into a Yugo, in terms of spiritual
guidance. If she is a Catholic, however, she can skip the tree, the dinner, the gifts, the pretty red flowers, the eggnog, the angels singing, the Nativity set, the Magi, the star, cards, wreaths, lights, candles. She just has show up at Mass, since Christmas is a Holy Day of Obligation.
There are quite a few things that Jesus asked us to remember. I barely see anyone remember them.
We are to remember the poor at all times.
We are to love each other.
We are to see Him in each other.
And two more things that I think she might have difficulty finding, not in the teachings of Jesus, but among His supposed followers:
Forgive those who trespass against us.
Love your enemies.
Seriously, has anyone seen that lately? Note the words "love" and "enemy". Who is your enemy? Got some love for them? That blowhard at work? The girl who bullied you in high school? That guy who robbed you at gunpoint? Taliban, anyone?
I'm sure Jesus would be happier if we skipped His birthday altogether if we better remembered the things He wanted us to remember. But we don't.
So today, at least for one day, we can remember it all. We remember it today, because we always remember when we look at a new born baby that anything is possible. Anything.
Celebrating Jesus' birthday helps us remember. If everyone always remembered we'd have a very Merry Everyday.
Merry Christmas, everyone! Remember what Jesus told us to remember. Start with that windbag Uncle Dudley and work your way up the list.