Monday, December 10, 2007

Jesus in the Forums

Friday evening in the Idea Forum, RoseofSharon, an Etsy seller asked the question, "Why is there no Jesus in the Gift Guide?" Curious, I started to read the many replys to her question. I must admit I was somewhat surprised at some of the responses: "the holiday doesn't just belong to Christ" - uh, CHRISTmas. I realize we all have different beliefs and celebrate our holidays accordingly; but I found some of the statements attempting to take the true meaning of Christmas from those who do belief in the miracle of Christ's birth. I for one, was raised Catholic, maybe not always the best (the nuns were always suspending me). I even attended a Catholic college, and as usual was in trouble because I questioned so much that was being taught in theology, that I figured I had to learn for myself what my religion was about. I think I have read almost every book written on Christianity; I have learn about the beliefs of Muslim's, and Hindu's. My daughter married a man who is Jewish, and they are learning about the customs of each other's holiday and celebrating both.

Ok, back to the Forum of Friday. One person's response was, "the Gift Guide is for the holidays, there are other winter celebration besides Christmas." This was followed by another's response of "do we really need to represent every single religion that recognizes winter celebrations, what if there were just no quality Jesus item's." My response to that person is that Jesus was a person who not only preached, but reached out to everyone, no matter what religion they were, or how poor they were. Historically, we cannot dismiss his birth or existence; he was a man of feelings for others, one who made many sacrifices in life. So I don't think Jesus would think anyone's art or craft that honors him as not having any qualities.

The threads went on and on, even mentioning, "shouldn't we be worshipping Mohammad also." One of my favorites was, "Commercialism has taken Christ out of Christmas, then isn't it ironic that someone wants to buy Jesus." As page after page continued of whether or not gifts with Christmas themes should have been listed in the Gift Guide, one could start to feel the tension and sarcasm starting to arise from all of those who usually work together. It's sad that one statement could have brought out such feelings in people. Another statement that stuck in my mind was, "maybe Jesus is missing because he's tired of people arguing about him." Isn't that what his whole life was about, how he sacrificed for others, so no, he didn't hide, he made himself seen even more. Maybe someone was right when then said "all wars began with religious differences." Did we forget that we are a website of crafter's working together, do we care at any other time of the year what religion someone is; we just admire their work!

Although someone did say, if we are Christians, then don't we have Christians have enough religious stuff around our houses already. Thank goodness for a few Etsian's who did find some nice items of Jesus and the Nativity. Cymnb listed a site which I check out, it had a beautiful portrait of Jesus made completely out of biblical scriptures, the shop is "Maryanne Babb." Another site someone listed was of a stained glass nativity, the beauty of it struck me immediately, and seeing there was only one left, I bought it immediately (and they are rushing to make me another as a gift for someone special). And yes, my house is full of religious statues, in fact, I leave my Nativity scene up all year, why shouldn't we have the privilege to see the miracle of Jesus' birth only during Christmas. The stained glass nativity came from the shop of "Creationsinglass".

In ending, "RoseofSharon", stated that it was never her intention to say Christmas is the only holiday celebrated, she even stated that, "I support everyone's right to worship to believe and celebrate as they will." "We are free to choose our own paths and should honor that in everyone." After 29 pages of threads, going back and forth, some in support, others not, and other quite sarcastic, Rob White, from Adm., finally cut off this whole discussion. Maybe now we can get back to celebrating and worshipping as we choose, and find it in our hearts to be tolerant of other people's customs and beliefs, we could all learn a lot by doing this. Let's find the true meaning of Christmas, and that of being a Christian.

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