Finding our humanity at Christmas
Whether they subscribe to the Christian faith, are uneasy with the origins of the festival or its provenance as marking the birth time of Jesus Christ, billions of people around the world, including the vast majority of Jamaicans are celebrating the Christmas season. That is good. Because for the all the commercialism that attends the season, with its potential for subsuming the larger message of the occasion, we like Christmas because it represents something far more profound than ourselves, but how we would wish to be.
Indeed, people of faith celebrate the birth of Christ, the Son of God revealed as man and delivered in humble circumstances. That is the beginning of powerful story of God's unconditional, classless, redemptive love, the thread of which runs from the manger, through to Jesus' washing of the feet at the Passover supper, followed by His crucifixion at Calvary.
"Unto you is born this day, in the City of David a saviour who is Christ the Lord." - Luke 2:11
"For Good so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believeth in Him shall not perish but t have everlasting life." - John 3:15
THE ACT OF GIVING
But even shorn of its religious significance of God creating a path the path to eternal salvation, the act of giving and fellowship that central to Christmas is universally appealing. It excites our humanity, bring to our consciousness this sense that humans exist best with a greater fulfilment when the live not only of, or for themselves but as community. And part of that process is caring and sharing which weighted down by festive bacchanalia of the season, is especially apparent at Christmas.
So, tomorrow, family and friends will gather and feast, share, fellowship and be warned by the experience. Christian or non-believer we will, even only for a short time, be closer to the universal truth, that mankind's survival is better assured in this environment of sharing and peace and redemptive love.
We will have acknowledge our common humanity. And that, in the end, is the basis of the story of Christmas.