Advent Project- Part One

In some ways, I don’t have a lot of hope for humanity. People are inherently good, but we also just can’t seem to get ourselves out of trouble- and I mean that on multiple, multiple levels. Living in a developing country, especially one with cultural roots that cannot be un-entwined from the effects of slavery, only convinces me more that all human beings struggle with some unalterable defect in our nature. Every last one of us. Including me, of course. Our issues are deep and far-reaching.

But before you assume that this post is going to be a big downer or that I’m hopelessly depressed and negative, hear me out. I do have hope. I just don’t think we as people can fix all our messes on our own. My hope lies in something greater.

That’s why I celebrate the true meaning of Christmas and Advent, which is the season of anticipation leading up to the birth of a child who would change everything. This year, because it sure doesn’t feel like the winter season I’m used to, I was looking for a creative and meaningful way to remind myself that Christmas is coming. The solution came to me in the form of toilet paper rolls.

Yes, toilet paper rolls. We have a ton of these cardboard tubes in a drawer, as well as empty plastic and glass bottles, boxes, and anything else that can’t be recycled here. I’ve been waiting for some way to reuse all these things and, finally, the thought occurred to me: make a nativity scene. I’ve always liked nativity scenes because they’re one of the few Christmas decorations that are actually relevant to the meaning of the holiday.

My thought was that throughout the season of Advent, I’d create the different characters in the order that they enter in to the nativity story. As I go along, I’ll probably share photos of what I come up with, as well as some interesting things I’ve learned about this baby’s birth that changed how I see the Bible and religion, among other things. It may not be what you expect…

-M

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