November 26, 2019

Don We Now Our Gay Apparel

It’s the little moments that make the Christmas season so special

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This is the latest Christmas advert for Bonds. The picture isn’t showing you what the little things actually are, but I assure you it’s the Bonds undies that are probably one size too small for both these muscular chaps.

Cue outrage.  And I kinda get that. I mean Christmas is in a free-for-all free-fall in late modern Western culture. It was only a matter of time before the mantra that “Christmas was all about the family” was simply extended to the new definitions of family that we are coming up with at an increasing rate.  Next year? Mrs Claus with a long white beard no doubt.

Leaving aside the cynic in me. Oh wait, there’s some more left. Bonds is trying to be daring and brave and woke. But all it’s doing is giving us another round of impossibly good looking people who none of us ordinary folk can emulate, as well as giving us sex for Christmas just like everyone has for years now.

Nothing new, daring, brave and woke there.  It’s two guys. So what?  Bonds has been using sex to sell for years, it’s just updating as it goes.  It’ll be a polyamory Christmas before we know it.  Geesh, one more person to buy for!

And maybe as Christians we’ve gone along with it all too much as well. We’ve settled in to the assumption that Christmas is all about the family, our family, rather than the Holy Family. Most of our public attempts to win a voice in the culture at Christmas are unashamedly pitched at modern families.  But not Modern Family – that squarely belongs to Bonds.  Modern Family versus Holy Family.  Guess who’s winning?

Family is a good thing right?  And if the culture locks on to Christmas as being about the family, then maybe we can smuggle in our narrative in there somewhere.  Family is nice and safe. We thought we could leverage that angle, get some traction with it, until of course the whole family thing and what defines it, slipped away from us.

But then again as Christians – and I’m guilty of this too – we’ve just done Christmas like the rest of the world, only at half pace.  A little less alcohol.  A little less family argument.  A little less extravagant.  A little less, dare I say it, sexy?

Perhaps over the coming decades as both family and Christmas slip further from our definitions we can subvert this new post-Christian Christmas narrative ourselves.  We can extend what the one born into the Holy Family came to bring: a new family that fulfils the best and subverts the worst of our definition of the word.

Bonds has the sexy, woke version of family sown up.  It extends its Christmas cheer year by year to the next version of that. How about we meet Bonds face to face as we head in the other direction, looking ever increasingly for ways to include the downtrodden, lonely, isolated, and just plain ugly, into our families at Christmas.

Maybe we can redeem that slogan too: It’s the little ones that make the Christmas season so special, the little ones who don’t seem to matter in the big scheme of things.


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There is no guarantee that Jesus will return in our desired timeframe. Yet we have no reason to be anxious, because even if the timeframe is not guaranteed, the outcome is! We don’t have to waste energy being anxious; we can put it to better use.

Stephen McAlpine – futureproof

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