Monday, December 13, 2010

Square Peg into Round Hole

Tis the season. The horrible time of year when many Christians wage war on the culture around them and demand their religious Holy Day be recognized. Some call it a clash of cultures; others the “War on Christmas.” I call it a time to roll my eyes and once again grin and bear it, silently…sort of.

I look at this cultural issue like the picture here. It is a square peg being forced into a round hole. Over and over again, year after year, Christians in the United States complain, rant, and belittle the culture around them. Through this repetitive cultural beating their hope is that everyone recognize Christmas. WHAM. They protest people saying Happy Holidays because somehow it puts Jesus back in Mary’s womb. WHAM. They tattle tale on different business that aren’t because they haven’t fallen in line with what they deem as the only means of hello or goodbye during this time. (click here to see what I mean, the name alone speaks of the common mix between culture and religious belief) WHAM. I start to hit my head on my wall in my office when I read stories like this one from the UM Reporter. WHAM, *ohh that one hurt a little*

My biggest frustration is the lack of clarity by many of the Christians in the US. What needs to be clarified is that, sorry to drop this bomb, but we are not a Christian Nation. We are a nation with a lot of Christians in it. This means that the culture in this nation should not be held accountable to our Holy Days. We are not the only religion that celebrates meaningful days during the month of December so Happy Holidays is a little more all encompassing, compassionate, and understanding.

For many Christians I think they look at our culture, our nation, and see a round peg because they are a round peg. They would like everything to be like them. But the truth is our culture is square. It is formed differently than Christians are formed. Our culture is formed by democracy, capitalism, the media, and tons of other forces. Christians are to be formed by Christ. See the difference?

Instead of banging on the square peg trying to force it to go through the round hole, why not realize you are the round peg that fits there. Instead of shouting about how Christmas is being forgotten, why not embrace our culture in the way we are taught by the one who forms us? Why not be Christ’s love for the world. I have a feeling if more Christians did this that square peg would turn round quicker.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You hit a peg on the head. Just today, someone had said Merry Christmas on facebook. I replied, Happy Holidays! (I'm Christian and just meant like the rest of the year 'till new year's day)
They came back with a big WE KEEP CHRIST in CHRISTMAS , etc.
So, are you just playing the devil's advocate and making us think? ;~)
Merry Christmas and Happy HOLYdays to you, Reverend.