Found an interesting article on Australian attitudes to Christmas via atheist blogger Sean the Blogonaut. When 800 Australians were polled about Christmas:
- 75 per cent said it was about good times with family and friends
- 20 per cent said the day was about the birth of Christ
- 3 per cent said it was about giving and receiving presents
So, while consumerism is often critiqued at this time, it would seem that our most powerfully distracting idols are a lot closer to home. I am reminded of what that baby we celebrate at Christmas said when he grew up:
“If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even their own life—such a person cannot be my disciple.”
Hyperbole it may be, but the essential teaching is that family allegiance comes second to messianic allegiance, if you’re an authentic disciple of the Messiah. So I ask myself, how does my schedule reflect my allegiances?