Monday, December 24, 2012

Still the Better Story

As Christmas looms, the story is still reverberating in my wandering mind. I posted a few weeks ago about looking for the “real” Christmas, getting past the greeting card sentimentality to something with substance.
Then I saw Life of Pi and found my thoughts broken into new perspectives and rewired. The power and truth of “story” was the theme, of course.  The importance of “truth” beneath, beyond, and yet infused with some semblance of fact and connection. (It was a movie far deeper and yet more accessible than last year’s Tree of Life. But I wander.)

I got this far in that post:

None happened as we see it
No matter how hard we try to preserve
or try to keep Christ there.
It was dark until the angels called
the shepherds out of their fear.
Then it was dark again.

And then I realized that such a story won’t get us closer to God. It lacks the mysterious, the mystical.

It needs both visions working together to be real. 
For both are true. 

The darkness was real and palpable to those shepherds both before AND after they angels sang their promise of “Peace on Earth.” Hatred was as real both before AND after the angels chanted “goodwill to all.”

What then is “The Better Story?”

A Virgin winces in childbirth
Kept company by her betrothed and no doubt a midwife.
No room in the Inn meant a respite from the crowds and the possibility
Of privacy for this unique first-born’s moments.
No noisy nosy bystanders. Just a Holy Family for all holy families to come.

Which is the story that will lead us to believe in God?

Shepherds bored in the nearby hills, wincing from the sudden light
Changing this from one more dark and lonely night.
Common people with an uncommon visitation news that
For them and all common folk a savior has been born.
They and they alone are there, stand-ins for you and anyone who might need that news.

 Which story do I want to believe?

God, wrapped in strips of cloth, Comforted and
Held in safety and compassion by a
Loving Mother as he feeds and she stares in awe.
Like any Imah or Abba, Mommy or Daddy watching the
Fruits of Creation, breathing, falling asleep with no care.
Unaware of the commotion of life or the lack of peace
He has come to transform.

 The beginning of a
Revolution of faith that even now we fail to grasp. Even now
We try to rewrite it into a different story. One that contains too many attempts
At finding just-the-facts .

But here we rediscover the importance of The Story. 
The Story of Christmas

Christ’s Mass
Nativity- The Birth-

Filled not with “facts” but with “Truth” shining like a
Many-pointed Star, in any and all directions,

Swaddling humanity in strips of the eternal cloth
Of Grace and Love.
May the peace and joy of Christmas be reborn in you this year, hearing the story as it leads us all, again, to believe in God.

Merry Christmas.

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