Because the world did not “collapse,” we are here to thank God for life in this world, and for the greater Life, the divine Life, that breaks into our hearts and minds, and which is endless. For those who follow him faithfully, Christ is indeed “the light shining in the darkness, and the darkness cannot overcome it.” Not even the darkness of human foolishness and gullibility.
Darkness. Even evil. We recently learned of the massacre of innocent little children and their teachers in Connecticut. Yes, the deed was extremely evil, and left in its wake human agony beyond imaging. Apparently, Newtown, CT, decided that they had to take down public Christmas decorations this year. I suppose the town leaders thought the decorations for Christmas meant good times, joy, pleasures in abundance. Long forgotten, perhaps, is that the red of Christmas is for Christ’s blood, and that what we celebrate is not a party, not a good time here, but the reality of God coming to free us from evil by dying for us. Some will say of mass murder: What evil? “Just mental derangement.” If the slaughter of innocent little ones was not evil, what would be? Evil is a lack of goodness--and extreme evil, such as we saw in Newtown, displays a radical lack of goodness, and most likely a deliberate and sustained playing with evil in various forms. If this inverted, radically fallen Adam did indeed spend hours with violent video games in which murdering human beings was made a sport, and “fun,” should we be surprised that a sick mind would attempt similar deeds in “real time”?
In the face of evil, should we refuse to celebrate Christmas? Should we strip down our churches and homes because of so much evil in this world, even at times in our hearts and minds? Or should we all the more renounce the darkness within ourselves and in our human condition, and turn again and again, with longing cries, towards the Light that no darkness can ever overcome? Stripping away Christmas decorations in the face of evil shows that the officials calling for de-decorating do not understand the meaning of Christmas at all. Folks expected Christmas to mean parties, and booze, and care-free laughter. Now they wonder: Who can have “fun” when murder destroys so many lives? We need Christ far more than most people realize. Without Christ, we would all be like that radically fallen Adam in Connecticut.