Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

This blog will be written from an orthodox Christian point of view. There may be some topic that is out of bounds, but at present I don't know what it will be. Politics is a part of life. Theology and philosophy are disciplines that we all participate in even if we don't think so. The Bible has a lot to say about economics. How about self defense? Is war ethical? Think of all the things that someone tells you we should not touch and let's give it a try. Everything that is a part of life should be an expression of worship.

Keep it courteous and be kind to those less blessed than you, but by all means don't worry about agreeing. We learn more when we get backed into a corner.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Opus 2012-326, Are You Having a Merry Christmas?

Just as I look forward to Thanksgiving dinner because I can turn on the Christmas music after dessert, I dread Christmas night because I need to put away the carols and such.  I know it is just my own legalism but it makes the time more special.  I may fudge a little for next Sunday’s worship music because the pastor’s wife likes to continue a week, the decorations will still be up and there will be a “Christmasy” topic in the sermon.  Besides the Orthodox don’t celebrate Christmas until January 6.

Have you noticed how many people complain about Christmas?  I think it is a point of view and an understanding of what we celebrate.

Think of the elements of this season:  Music, decorations, gifts, gatherings and worship.

Music for the Christian focuses on the incarnation.  It reminds us of the Word made flesh.  It reminds us that the cure for sin is a reality.  It speaks of love and hope.  For the generic pagan and Xian the music focuses on the dreary love life of the latest pop star.  We hear all kinds of ditties, some clever, some boring, all pointless.  I love “White Christmas” but it doesn’t come close to “O Come, All Ye Faithful.”  No wonder they badmouth the season.

Decorations for Christians focus on the manger, angels, wise men and the Light who was the Life of men.  Awesome.  For cultural Christians it is Santa, snow flakes, snowmen, gingerbread and wrapping paper.  No wonder they miss the point. 

Gifts for believers are a chance to give and share.  It is a joy of seeing the face of another light up.  For too many it is about who got the most loot, greed and materialism, indeed.

For many Christmas is a time of family gatherings whether they are believers or not.  There are differences though.  Believers will read the Christmas story and rebuild the ties that bind.  The general population looks for another excuse to get drunk and practice gluttony.  It makes a difference.

And the ultimate gathering is worship.  This is only for believers.  Others may attend but it is not worship, it is ritual or habit.  We come together to celebrate the coming of the Messiah as He began His journey to the cross, the tomb, the resurrection, the ascension and some day the return.  What a time of hope.  What a glorious experience as we sing,
No more let sin nor sorrow grow,
Nor thorns infest the ground.
Merry Christmas!
and don’t forget,

homo unius libri

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Comments are welcome. Feel free to agree or disagree but keep it clean, courteous and short. I heard some shorthand on a podcast: TLDR, Too long, didn't read.