The Christmas Podcast
Christmas has made quite a splash in the media this year--from holiday greetings in stores, to whether or not to have congregational services on Christmas morning. These media-concocted controversies give Brad and Wayne a chance to ruminate about all the hoopla surrounding Christmas and to consider how we as believers can truly make an impact in the world—not just on a holiday, but by letting Christ make himself known continually through us.
Also check out our new Archive that includes listing by chronological order, by topics and has a special section for guests who have appeared on our podcasts.
Two quick notes, before I get to listening:
1. iTunes didn’t pick up this edition as a part of my subscription to the podcast.
2. Thirty-three episodes? Wow! What am I missing? Here’s my list:
1. The Journey Begins (March 19 2005) – intro to Wayne and Brad
2. The Adventure of a Lifetime (April 1 2005) – Walking it out; gay marriage
3. Contradictions of Religion (April 8 2005) – Terri Schiavo and the Pope’s death
4. The Things God Uses (April 22 2005) – Tom Mohn from Tulsa
5. A Journey Into Renewal (April 29 2005) – Dave Frederickson in Sacramento
6. Believers Outside the Box (May 10 2005) – Response to mag articles
7. Living in the Relationship (June 2 2005) – How do you walk it out?
8. It’s About Relationship (July 1 2005) – How do you know Him?
9. What Becomes of Leadership? (July 8 2005) – Responding to listener
10. Transition (July 15 2005) – Response to last week
11. The Gospel Jesus Preached (August 4 2005) – More of Tom Mohn
12. Look for Real Body Life (August 16 2005) – South Africa trip
13. Religion’s Antidote (August 25 2005) – The Cross
14. ‘Out of the Church’ Christians? (September 7 2005) – Andrew Strom letter
15. LadySmith Story (September 14 2005) – Stefan Vosloo in Africa
16. Finding Freedom Outside the box (September 23 2005) – Ladysmith followup
17. Koinonia Killers (September 29 2005) – Barriers to fellowship
18. Koinonia Cultivators (October 7 2005) – Followup to last week
19. Living Under Father’s Care (October 14 2005) – Kevin Smith in Australia
20. Letter from David (October 21 2005) – Email to Wayne
21. Children Unplugged (October 28 2005) – Kevin Smith, Wayne, and Brad on kids
22. Children Unplugged: The Sequel (November 4 2005) – Followup to last week
23. Barna’s Revolution (November 14, 2005) – Discussion on Barna’s book
24. The Freedom Not To Have It All Figured Out (November 18, 2005) – response to emails
25. Structures and Systesm (November 26, 2005) – seeing through the system
26. Meet the Wives (December 2, 2005) – Kelly and Sarah
27. Meet the Wives, Again! (December 9, 2005) – Kelly and Sarah, Part 2
28. Accept No Substitutes (December 16, 2005) – Why follow the crowd?
29. Christmas Podcast (December 23, 2005) –
Glad to have another podcast… what a gift for us all 🙂
I’m not sure what the number difference is. Brad got the number of his iPod, so I assume he has some of the pre-show material that we taped as we went on. But I think you’re right. There are 29 official podcasts…
About the iTunes link… We use Feedburner to update iTunes from our site and they are having server trouble or maintenance today. So it should update soon…
Re: the entire Christmas debate
Our family has experimented with a number of ways to celebrate Christmas over the years. At one point, we thought it would be best to put more emphasis on Jesus at Christmas time. It didn’t make us feel more spiritual, but rather schizophrenic trying to give Jesus equal time with Santa.
When that didn’t work, we decided NOT to celebrate Christmas at all, thanks to an article by A. W. Pink. We were pretty hard-core about it, writing letters to all of our family and friends, asking them not to mention Christmas to us or send gifts to us or our kids. Boy, did we feel superior, at least for awhile. All it really accomplished was to alienate everyone around us, particularly robbing our parents of the blessing of giving gifts to their own grandchildren.
Finally, we settled on our current approach about fifteen years ago. We celebrate Christmas purely as the secular, cultural holiday that it really is. We don’t feel guilty about “taking Christ our of Christmas” since we’re just trying to enjoy a wonderful time of year without trying to make (as my grandpa used to say it) “a silk purse out of a sow’s ear.” From my limited understanding, it was the Emperor Constantine that tried to Christianize everything around him: his armies, his kingdom, and every secular celebration, including those that have now become known as Christmas and Easter to us.
So, we deck the halls with boughs of holly. We usually refrain from attending carol services and special “birthday parties for Baby Jesus” and other such attempts to make Christmas a religious celebration. We prefer celebrating the incarnation (and the resurrection) every time we give thanks to Father for sharing His Son with us!
Thanks for your ministry over the past year!
Bill, what wisdom in the way you deal with Christmas now. I love the way you went through all the options and now you are in a ‘spacious place’ where you are free to celebrate what christmas really is. For me, it was in recognising the history of Christmas that really led me to feel so differently about it, and to not feel so much of a culture wars approach to it. I must admit, the whole gift-giving thing feels sometimes wrong to me in my more militant moments, and the rest of the time I just go along with it because that’s what happens, and it *is* nice giving gifts to other people – but why then? And for what purpose? I hate empty traditions and rituals, and that’s what it feels like to me sometimes.
I feel I have as little need these days to celebrate Christmas in the sense of celebrating Him – what’s the difference between that day and the day after? – as I do for attending services in a bricks and mortar building. Thanks, Jesus, for the freedom you have brought us :O) I must admit I was looking forward to it being after Christmas, especially because here in Australia it is summer, and I wanted to get into some hardcore relaxing that didn’t involve being in a shopping centre trying to squash my feelings of irritation at my fellow human ;O)
“I feel I have as little need these days to celebrate Christmas in the sense of celebrating Him – whatâ€™s the difference between that day and the day after? – as I do for attending services in a bricks and mortar building.”
Yes, we don’t believe that “church” is contained in a building or an organization, so why would we want to be observing the liturgical calendar?