Boxing Day!

Today is a holiday that's semi-unknown in the US, and mostly misunderstood by those of us who know it exists.  It's…Boxing DAY!

What do I know about Boxing Day?  Well, original I only knew what was referenced on the TV show M*A*S*H years ago, that on Boxing Day, the officers of the military do the enlisted jobs, and the enlisted do the officers' jobs.  It's a one-day swap out, to see how the other side lives.  Apparently, if you trust the Wikipedia, there is some nature of this day originating in allowing the household servants the day off, since they were required to work on Christmas.  However, that's more a matter for legend and not the point.

The point is this: well, there are a couple of points:

1.) Words shift their usage with time.  How many people assume Rocky is the movie for today? (Apart from some of you loons who think Rocky is the movie for everyday!) It's not about boxing, though it is Boxing Day.  Likewise, we must be careful assuming we always know what is meant by a word constantly repeated.  It may not mean what we think it means.  Look it up or ask about it!

2.) Just because you don't know of a holiday or special event, doesn't mean it's not important.  Also, just because someone doesn't know your holiday, you don't have to get overly irritable.  In due time, I expect that nothing of celebrating the birth of Christ will remain in public American conversation. So what?  Like Boxing Day is special to some, Christmas ought to be special to Believers.  Shall we focus on our own behavior or spend time lamenting the behavior of others?

3.) Finally: while I don't know if the M*A*S*H version of Boxing Day is perfectly accurate (given it took them 11 years to fight a 3 year war, who knows? Although, to their credit, for those 11 years the Forgotten War could not be forgotten, and Father Mulcahy is still why I want to be an Army Chaplain), it's a perfect complement to Christmas.  Why?

What happened at Christmas? For you picky folks, what do celebrate at Christmas, whenever it actually happened?  We celebrate the birth of Christ.  The Incarnation, where God puts on flesh and dwells among us, where He sees how we live from the inside.  Where the flesh annoys and distracts.  Where hunger is, and danger dwells.

Yet He came anyway.  And unlike the demi-gods of mythology, He meant to.  This wasn't the result of unquenchable lust or jealous wandering, but rather the intentional plan of redemption.

And not for one day, but beginning one day, and ending one day some 30-plus years later, when He ascended, after having died and risen, that we may all someday come to Him, and by coming to Him, be with Him for eternity.

So, today, let's celebrate that.  Not that our faith hinges on one day, but that it hinges on eternity.

Doug

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