Celebrating Christmas in an Asian Slum: Plenty of Joy but no chicken soup for the soul here…Pt.1 of 2

December 31st, 2005

Should we be re-writing our stories and changing our metaphorical concepts of success & faith? 

Christmas is only just catching on here in Thailand. Somewhere along the line they have jerried to the fact that it is a real cash cow - the true meaning / reason for the season if Economy is your god.

In a country where there are only 0.5% Christian we were invited to share Christmas dinner in a small church in the heart of the slum which was started by a man who ruins contemporary Christian mythology. Let me explain…

He was born in a slum, gave into its despair and entered gangs, crime and jail. Then he found Christ. Here is where the story goes haywire for most Christians bred on a low-fibre diet of Chicken-Soup for those who worship a man who got nailed to a tree:

He still lives in the slum; he raises his children right in the slums over open sewers. He is in love with God who is love. The suffering he goes through he considers as only fractional when compared with the good news: that God came into this world through Jesus who was born in little more than a stinky, smelly, slum.

That is both good and bad news: It’s great news for the poor, it’s bad news if you have been told that following Jesus = Living happily ever after, healthier, wealthier and wiser (gospel vs. culture, who’s influence is at work here?).

Tags: Urban Slums

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