Three celebrations occur(ed) this week. Sunday some Christian congregations took time to consider the reign of Christ on Christ the King Sunday. Thursday we celebrate Thanksgiving. And then there is Black Friday. No one really wants to read the preacher rehashing what the preacher preached when he last preached. So we will look ahead.
Advent Season begins on Sunday. And, if Advent were a person she might be looking for an ironic community. The anticipation of a once for all group of people set to redeem a time where something more than what you buy matters.
There would be no better time to consider a new way to live incongruently in the world we inhabit than do something different on Black Friday. That would be ironic. But, many Christians will be getting their deal on, maybe even pitching a tent. Why, because we have given in to the subtle influences that lead us to believe Christmas is about scoring the best deal. And now the darkness has invaded a day of thankfulness.
Don’t you find it a bit ironic that Black Friday first referenced a bleak day on Wall Street in 1864? Maybe that is too far back to recall. But, some of you remember Black Monday, another infamous day on Wall Street. Both Black Friday and Cyber (Black) Monday reverse the curse. Maybe. Only if you, Dear consumer, spend enough.
Then there is the rising tide of protest to Happy Holidays. The sense of fury over semantics occurs each year. It is as if saying the words Merry Christmas means the speaker is both merry and gets Christmas. Most of this occurs while consuming the latest deals. Read these thoughts.
Yes, I believe, if Advent were a person she would be looking for an ironic community. She would be looking for a community that understood the way to live perpendicular to testy responses to differing sensibilities. Walsh and Keesmaat, in Colossians Remixed, offer their rendition of Colossians 1 that provides a glimpse into what it might mean to live in such an ironic community. Here is a quote from Walsh that gets at the heart of their project, read commentary,
“What was true of an ancient community of Christian believers struggling with a powerful and appealing philosophy is also true for Christians in a postmodern context. Arguments that deconstruct the regimes of truth at work in the late modern culture of global capitalism are indispensable. So also is a deeper understanding of the counterideological force of the biblical tradition. But such arguments are no guarantee that the biblical metanarrative will not be co-opted for ideological purposes of violent exclusion, nor do arguments prove the truth of the gospel. Only the nonideological, embracing, forgiving and shalom-filled life of a dynamic Christian community formed by the story of Jesus will prove the gospel to be true and render the idolatrous alternatives fundamentally implausible.”
Brian J. Walsh, Colossians Remixed: Subverting the Empire
Advent cometh and is looking for an ironic community. What ways is your Christian community living ironically in the world it inhabits?
Image Credit: Candles