I ran into a theological quandary right before Christmas. It was about my niece, Jolene, perfect and pink and bald as ever at 14 months old. My sister, her mom, who like the rest of my family is disinterested at best in religion, texted me out of the blue with a question: did I think Jolene ought to be baptized?
It’s curious, and maybe telling, the way the meanings of words change and sometimes seem to come completely unmoored over time. What do you think an epiphany is?
This is a time for making New Year’s resolutions. Some really good ones for 2020 are: Be kind, be kind, and be kind. Another good one might be this: listen to the nudges of the incarnate God within you and act on those nudges.
It’s Christmas. Which means it’s time for all those horrible “Best of the Year” lists, right? Aren’t they oppressive? The New York Times alone declared the 54 Best Songs, the 17 Most Striking Homes, and the 10 Most Idyllic Destinations of 2019. The published lists of the best actors, best dance, best theater, best art. The best movies, best albums, best TV shows. They told us about the top 10 new restaurants, and recipes, and the best “wine moments” of the year (whatever those are). The Times even listed the 10 Best Los Angeles Dishes of 2019. Seriously? Do they get to do that?