This Christmas is a little different here in the Knudsen household. Just a bit of background, my wife and I got married on June 25th of this year, (2016 pretty rough year to get married, am I right?) which makes today 6 months of marriage. We moved to Waco, Texas from our hometown of Norman, OK shortly after marriage so I could go to seminary. 6 months away from home, and now away from home for the holidays, these are my ramblings.
Despite what everyone tells us this season is about, I think the reason for the season is entirely up to the individual. Mainstream media seems to tell us some sort of blend between consumerism and thankfulness for those around you is where we ought to be, however, I don’t see this as even a remotely universal view of the season. Perhaps for a large majority of the upper-middle class white population, this may be the case, but I don’t think it honestly reaches too far out of this bubble.
I think, instead, we must decide for ourselves what this season is about. I have been doing some thinking lately and have been having a hard time organizing succinct thoughts about this. As a Christian, a large part of why I believe this season exists is because of the birth of Jesus Christ. This is certainly a part of what I celebrate and think about this season. If I were a better Christian, perhaps this would consume more of my holiday cheer, but I can’t help looking out beyond Christian tradition/thought. We are not a part of a church yet, so many of the old traditions we have formed, living in the midwest and being baptist, have fallen by the wayside.
To fill this void, I have implanted a mix of apathy and activism. This sounds, at first, like a contradiction, but I can’t think of another way to describe how I feel. Much of the second half of 2016, for me, has contained anger, bitterness, betrayal, and confusion. So, to an extent, I’m exhausted. Exhaustion usually leads to a short season of apathy and rest — that’s precisely where you’ll find me right now. But, on the opposite end of the spectrum, all of these emotions, thoughts, and inaction have led me to be hungry to do something about issues and injustices I see. Here I am, at the crossroads of apathy and activism, wondering if I will have the willpower to keep going.
I called this a rambling for a reason, I want parts of this blog to be unorganized, unedited, and as uncensored of thoughts as I can muster. I find myself over-intellectualizing things a lot, so I think it is a good practice to just let loose and ramble without direction.
For those reading, Merry Christmas. Whether you recognize/celebrate this day or not, I hope it is a cheerful one full of joy and gladness. I hope, in reading this, you may find inspiration to find your own “reason for the season” this year. Do not be afraid to take some time of solitude during this time and do some introspection. Especially for us introverts, it is good to get away from the mobs of family and think through why exactly we are all gathering and celebrating.
Then, maybe let yourself ramble, it truly is good for the soul.