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The Christmas story as a challenge to transform

July 8, 2010

One thing that has intrigued me most about the Christmas story is its power to transform.   Unfortunately I don’t think people talk enough about that today, perhaps because of all the emphasis on decorations and gifts.  We may have stopped thinking about the transformation the birth of this child can bring to our world if we have enough faith to set aside our fears and angers of the “other” and see all humans as our brothers/sisters.  I travel around Asia a lot and I meet lots of people who have every right to be angry at those who have harmed them, but somehow they are able to put that anger aside and say, “let us be friends.”  I think they have somehow found the true meaning of this great event that happened more than 2,000 years ago.

It’s so hard to let go of our fear and anger.  We feel justified in taking revenge for injustices done against us.  Yet this child, when he grew into a young man, called us to forgive even our worst enemy and to do good to those who do harm to us.  This kind of transformation from anger/hate to love/compassion takes tremendous faith and courage. 

This book is a small attempt to encourage children to think about the message of transformation that is the foundation of the Christmas event.  They need role models to show them how this transformation can affect our communities, societies and nations.  The book, therefore, is also a challenge to adults to really recognize and live out the transformative experience that the Christmas story brings to all of us.

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