It’s the most wonderful time of the year. The holiday cheer is unmistakable. T’is the season for goodwill and good times. But very often this wonderful time becomes one of the busiest time of the year.
Last week my husband’s job threw a gala and it was lots of fun. My writer’s group and I met for dinner and reviewed the blessings of this year. This week, I’m attending a volunteer appreciation and a concert at my son’s school. And yet, even as my calendar is filled with dates for parties and other events, I can’t help but think about the events that brought us here.
The birth of Christ marked the timeline of history. B.C or A.D. reflects the significance that the God who created the world sent His Son to save it. All my festivities pale in comparison if they cause me to lose sight of the greatest event.
Heaven made sure we didn’t miss it that first Christmas. A host of angels appeared to shepherds in the field. They stirred up quite a frenzy with the glorious announcement of “peace on earth, goodwill towards men.” (see Luke 2:8-15)
Peace and goodwill can become casualties if I get caught up in the frenzy of activities, without focusing on the Christ in Christmas. From the moment the season begins (which is early October for retailers), we are awash in opportunities to shop, decorate, entertain, and attend a variety of events. These can all be wonderful things. But if I don’t take a deliberate pause to put the season in perspective, the best gift can get right past me.
Frankincense, gold, and myrrh were fitting gifts for the newborn King. And yet, God’s indescribable gift to all humanity cooed inside a manger. No ribbons or sparkly packaging surrounded Jesus that day. But the fact that the Word wrapped in flesh came and dwelt among us is a truth that shines forever. (see John 1:1-14)
Some of my holiday activities also include, reading the biblical account of Christ’s birth and listening to my favorite Christmas songs about the season’s true meaning. These are slow-down moments I savor in the midst of a very busy time.
Regardless of our celebration or gift-buying custom this time of year, here’s some good news: Jesus came. He was born of a virgin. He died on a cross for our sins and he rose from the dead on the third day (Luke 1:26-35 and 1 Corinthians 15:3-4). For anyone who receives Jesus as Lord, here’s a blessed truth. We’ve already received (and said yes to) an eternal party invitation. His grace decorates our lives in unexpected ways. Having our sins forgiven by God is the gift that keeps on giving. It doesn’t get any better than that to bring hope to the heart and joy to the soul.
“Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!” – 2 Corinthians 9:15 NIV
What are you enjoying this Christmas season?
(Share you comments in the section below.)