Saturday, January 9, 2010

Exit 37 Route 80 Rockaway Jesus

A few years back, Rockaway NJ was the epicenter of one of the biggest Christian conflicts this state has ever experienced when the decision was made relocating the very urban Christ Church from Montclair to rustic, sedated, Rockaway. I’m assuming since it hasn’t been much in the paper much lately, that it has calmed down and a recent trek to the local Christian bookstore gave no indication that the controversy was still a brewing.

Once inside the store, I was immediately drawn to the plethora of Kneeling Santa statues and figurines. Now I realize that Christians have been trying to reconcile the whole Santa-in-Christmas thing but I did find Santa kneeling at our Savior’s cattle troth a bit odd, if not creepy.
A soft-spoken Sunday schoolish-looking sales person approached me. "Do you know the story of Santa and baby Jesus?" she asked. At first I thought she was kidding, but she looked way too sincere. I thought for a moment that perhaps she held the secret why in my hometown, Santa is right there at the manger (along with Sponge Bob and a few of Snow White’s Dwarfs).

So right there in the middle of the Family Christian Bookstore I heard the most amazing story in which I’ll give you the very abridged version:
Santa finds a young boy asleep in some hay/Santa wakes the young boy up/young boy wants to see how Santa makes the toys/Santa slips on ice/ breaks his leg/there’s a lost reindeer/young boy moves in with Santa/young boy makes Santa a pair of crutches/boy instructs the elves to modify the sleigh to be more like a chaise lounge/Santa delivers presents with the boy on Christmas eve/Santa finishes his rounds but boy insists he has one more stop/boy shows Santa where he was born/Santa hobbles to a stable filed with animals, wise men, Mary and Joseph/Santa kneels to worship the baby.
And I thought the story of Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer was strange. She looked me in the eye and said, "Of course this is not historically correct."
But alais,
Phil 2:10 …at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth.


Gigi said...

Of course I've seen the kneeling Santa before...but I've never heard the story. Really? I mean, really?? And she told you the story with a straight face? And then she said, "not historically correct..."? And Sponge Bob and Dwarfs at the manger??

Like I said...I always learn something new here!!

Ken Summerlin said...

Hilarious! Having spent 13 years as the owner and manager of a Christian bookstore, I can certainly believe your story. Sad but true, many Christian retailers carry products that most certainly must be an embarrassment to God.

NewJerseyJesus said...

Oh yeah, I even have a friend in Rockaway and she had the same experience with the "Kneeling Santa"! Next year, I will take photos of my town's manger's pretty weird.