27 December 2007

So, what about the other eleven days?

I said yesterday that we should keep celebrating Christmas, that we should do so until after 6 January. But how to do so? It's not as if there is a plethora of books of Christmas readings for all twelve days, in contrast with Advent. Books for the celebration of Advent are a quarter per dozen.

I have an idea, though I make no claim to originality.

You know how people will make New Year's resolutions? These are things that people are going to do differently than they have done, or things that they will begin to do that they have not been doing. For example: "I'm going to read the Bible through this year." My sense is that the majority of people don't keep their resolutions, so maybe people should stop making them.

However, there is a habit of mind which thinking about resolutions can get us into. Obviously, a modicum of self-examination is necessary in order to make a New Year's resolution. And self-examination is a very good thing on a Christian view.

It occurs to me that the time of year when Christians celebrate the Incarnation is a great time to engage in some ruthless self-examination. As a Reformed Catholic, I believe that Sanctification is more than adequately defined as dying more and more to sin and living more and more obediently, by God's grace. Does "dying more and more to sin" describe us?

Not having, at present, any better way to spend the Christmas season, I'm going to spend it examining myself against the Ten Commandments as they are expounded upon in the Larger Catechism (Questions 103 through 148). Yes, this can be done -- and should be done -- any time of the year, and I do it several times per year. (Some say Lent is a good time for it also.)

This isn't at attempt at being (or even just appearing to be) holier than thou. I'm just looking actually to do something for the twelve days of Christmas instead of just marking time until Epiphany. I mean: the gifts have all been distributed.


About Me

James Frank Solís
Former soldier (USA). Graduate-level educated. Married 26 years. Texas ex-patriate. Ruling elder in the Presbyterian Church in America.
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