For those of you who read my last post, I thought I would add to it a little bit. Because, now we know where our focus should be this Christmas, we may stop and scratch our heads and say, “Now what?”. And that’s what this post is about.
Like I said earlier, there is *so* much emphasis on the material things, and it’s part of our sinful nature to be greedy, especially at this time of year. To clarify, I am NOT thumbs-downing Christmas presents or hot chocolate or festivities or family gatherings. They are blessings from the Lord! And we should accept them. But I just want to point out the area where we often stumble, and what we can do to get back up again. Our souls suffocate with the busy-ness, and it’s then we realize that Christmas presents are great, but honestly, there’s something still missing. We can’t be content without Christ, without the Living Water, without the Breath of Life. He is the only One in whom we can be fully satisfied.
So when we look to Him Christmas Day, every day, every week, every moment…we can finally inhale that same breath that Christ exhaled in His Last. Because in His Death, we live.
And living is a gift from God.
1) Read a portion of the Christmas Story every day
One of the best ways to keep Christ in Christmas to to read and reread the Real Story every morning with your cup of coffee quietly to yourself, or, even better, you can do this with your family, after those long, hard days, come together and fall on your knees before the manger in awe and worship. When you surround your heart with the true Message of Christmas, you will more likely put it at the center, and your mind will be fresh with the memory of that night a Star led three men to the King of kings, and that ordinary girl who carried the Gift in her womb.
2) Encourage young children to give a “special gift” to Jesus for His birthday– one that only they and Christ know about
It could be spending more time talking to Him, showing love and kindness to a new friend at school, or trying harder to include another sibling. Or, you could even do this yourself. Pour your heart to Him, thank Him, love Him, and pray on anything that’s on your heart this December. Another mother carrying a baby? A person who’s sick? For someone to draw closer to God? Traveling mercies?
Really, it can be anything.
He would love to talk to you. 🙂
3) Respond to those sad, weary souls who work long hours before the cash register, with a smile and a “Merry Christmas”
One thing I’ve noticed more and more these days, is the lack of joy during Christmas. The cashier usually hands you your receipt, and mumbles a “Have a good day” or “Happy Holidays”.
But here’s where you step in.
You show them the same love that Jesus had when He died on the Cross. And don’t answer with “Happy Holidays”. Because, I think, if you wish someone a “Merry Christmas”, it’s another way to literally bring Christ into Christmas.
4) Start Christmas morning by thanking Him for relinquishing His Crown, and His Glory, to take on human flesh and die for our scarlet sins.
Before you race down the stairs and take a flying leap into the presents under the tree, you should, again, pray to Him, because HE is what Christmas is about.
And He is the best Christmas gift you could ever have.
*** (excerpted from “Focus on the Family”, with my modifications and expansions)