Monday, December 24, 2007

season of wonder(ing)

Christmas Eve is here and I feel nothing. I don’t like feeling like this – Christmas is supposed to be a pinnacle of spiritual experience for Christians – a time to reflect on the miracle and wonder of God coming to earth in the form of Jesus. I don’t feel that. No reverence. No awe.

I guess, throughout all of the stages of my faith, it’s always been like this. I have always felt more connected to God the creator than to Jesus. Christmas has been a time for all of the secular things that people go on about – family and tradition and giving and such, but I’ve never felt a deep connection with the story of the baby Jesus. To be honest, I feel more of a spiritual stirring from the tradition of lighting lights to drive away the long dark nights at this time of year.

This whole lack of connect might be partly because it’s become such a cliché in our culture –perhaps the telling of the story in children’s pageants and the singing of sacred songs on the radio have stripped it of any ring of personal relationship for me. Knowing that the Christmas story becomes more fleshed out as the Gospels are further from the actual life of Jesus doesn’t help either, though. Generally I wouldn’t say that I don’t believe in miracles, but I don’t really believe that the miracles in the story actually historically happened.

When I actually admit things like this, I wonder if I am, somehow, a pagan who thinks she’s a Christian. I sometimes wonder how I can claim the faith for my own when I don’t agree with fundamental tenets – PJ says I’m just not a fundamentalist, but I still wonder, at times like this, what I’m doing here.

1 comment:

Tara said...

It is my personal opinion that there is plenty of room for critical thinking in the Christian faith... and there is nothing wrong with questioning. Jesus isn't scared away by our doubts. Otherwise I'd for sure be screwed.

And hey, if we were all honest we would all wonder, at least SOME of the time, what the heck we are doing here.

And I feel disconnected from it too. Actually, the first time I ever felt any real connection to ANYONE from the Christmas story was when I saw passion of the Christ... there is this scene when Jesus is carrying his cross and Mary (his mom) is running along following him. Jesus stumbles and falls and Mary has this flashback to when Jesus was a child and he fell and she held him and kissed him better and said "mommy's here" to him. So she runs over to Jesus (the adult) and says "mommy's here".

That hit me because now that I am a mommy I can relate to wanting to make things ok for my baby.

The point I am making is that some of us just really need to be able to relate to the characters in the story to feel connected to it. And the story of the birth of Christ is pretty hard to relate to.

Ok. It's late and I'm rambling. I'll stop since I am probably making no sense anyway!

Merry Christmas.