Did you read Lisa Belkin’s post in her NY Times blog The Motherlode about choosing religion for your child? With the holidays upon us, it really got me thinking. I love Christmas. Absolutely love it. My tree goes up on December 1, I listen to Christmas carols as soon as the radio starts playing them, and It’s a Wonderful Life is my favorite movie. But I don’t consider myself a Christian, so my kids celebrate a pretty secular Christmas.
Your head may be spinning around right now. You may be saying that I have no right to celebrate Christmas without celebrating the birth of Christ. My mother thinks the same thing, but I say celebrating Christmas for me means celebrating a time of love, compassion and generosity, even if I don’t believe in the story of its origin.
I’m not an athiest. I believe in God, I just don’t believe in any particular religion. After a strict upbringing by a Southern Baptist Born-Again Christian, I pushed away all religion because of its rigid rules. Up until last year, my children had never been to church. We did talk about God, but that was the extent of religion in our home. But, the need to bring a sense of community and a spirituality to my daughters’ lives was nagging me. I attended The Unitarian Universalist Congregation and felt like it was perfect fit for my family. We became members soon after.
My children are now learning about the world’s religions. They are learning, more importantly, about the universal message of compassion, love, honesty, generosity, etc. That is the message of Christmas that we talk about in our home during Christmas. Oh, and Santa is in there too.
Is religion in your Christmas?