Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Annual Christmas Eve Blog-Write

Years ago Melody started enforcing the new tradition of the Annual Christmas Eve Journal-Write. Whether or not any of us had written in our journals for days or even months, at least we would take the time to write at least a few pages at the end of the year. This is the first Christmas Eve I've spent at home by myself (meaning without any siblings), and it makes sense, since I'm the last single one, after Elise's wedding in May. And, while I was militant about keeping a daily journal as a missionary, I've done quite poorly since I returned. What I have done well, on the other hand, is blog regularly! So, I figured this year I would get with the times and update Melody's tradition for the 21st Century.

There have been a lot of festivities so far this year already, and I'm so glad I could be here for them. The last two Christmases have been really meaningful in their own ways, but I definitely missed spending time with the family and being a part of the events of which I saw many pictures and heard many stories. Tonight, contrary to usual traditions, Mom, Dad and I just stayed home and relaxed. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe was on ABC, and it turned out to be the perfect movie for Christmas Eve (it even has Father Christmas!). I hadn't seen this film in years, and remembered now what a brilliant movie and near-perfect adaptation of the source novel it is. Then, later tonight I went browsing the blogs of friends and family to see if there were any festive Christmas posts, and what I found were both good and bad. I found some inspiring posts on Christ and His birth and what it means for all of us, and I found some that were really confusing, not even to do with Christmas, but current political trends, and certain personal feelings toward certain political figures, and certain bewildering, circle-running ideologies that skew toward the world and away from Christ. It kind of took the wind out of my proverbial Christmas Eve sails, but gave me a lot to think about, and heaven knows that's not necessarily a bad thing. I've been silenced before I guess, but not usually when I calmly and politely outlined my thoughts, even in dissent. Then there's always the controversy of those who are so against religion and God and Christianity in general that they try to take away even the mere mention of Christmas (our country is dying of PC!), or at least acidly protest it in loud and intolerant ways. Why is it hip and trendy to be any religion but Christian? It's really curious and bothersome to me. Anyway, I don't really know what the point of this post is, except to say that I really am grateful for what I have, grateful for my faith and freedom to express it, and especially grateful that Christ was born so that He could die for us and ultimately redeem us, if we do our part. Agency is such a gift, but it's so misunderstood and misinterpreted in these times and I worry about our misuse of it. I am luckily not to be the judge of the souls of humankind (who would actually want to take that responsibility on themselves?...), but I also know that we are commanded by Christ to judge righteously, and judge from behavior, right from wrong. Hurrah for the Light of Christ, and the Spirit's guiding promptings!

To end, I guess I'll just post my favorite Nativity painting by an LDS artist (Walter Rane). There are a lot of LDS painters, and the Nativity has been treated by them all, most likely, but I like Rane's textures and colors and drama, and how it looks like I'm actually seeing a scene that really took place, rather than a fuzzy, golden-glowy, modern-Mormons-as-models painting.

Merry Christmas, everyone.

Let earth receive her king.


  1. Here, here. Merry Christmas! Great post. I swear I am going to barf if one more person blames accepting behavior contrary to their beliefs on agency. Like you said, judge righteously. Why even stand up for what we believe in if we don't think we should believe in it? I guess I have said this a million times, but why have missionaries go out and preach the gospel if it is wrong to tell people to change their ways and live the gospel? Agency is so that WE can choose righteously, and spread it to others. Basically we are giving up our agency when we just give in to worldly trends like gay marriage and abortion.

    Merry Christmas

  2. Very nice post. I, too, was bummed by some of the stuff out there in the blogosphere on Christmas Eve. I was all down and sad for a while. Luckily, Christmas always seems to win out, and we had a lovely year.

  3. Wonderful post. It was a good Christmas Eve. Though people tried to take that spirit away from me, I really think that it made me realise what Christmas was about and feel that. I hope you had a good one and will have a great new year! ;) Which I assume you will...

  4. Hey hey hey, I don't like Polar Express either! How's that for putting the wind back in your sails?