I love Christmas. I love the sights, sounds, songs, and smells. I love the candies. I love the family reunions and the gathering of friends. I love the gifts and the givers. But as much as I love these things, I do not love them in and of themselves. I love these things because they remind me of the One who loved me first.
Every year there seem to be more and more stress-laden, unhappy partakers in the holiday we call Christmas. It is almost as if someone forgot to give these pessimistic prunes the memo: CHRISTmas is coming. On the other extreme, you have the euphorical extremists all tanked up on the materialism of it all. It is almost as if someone forgot to give these optimistic ones the same memo: CHRISTmas is coming. You see, both have lost sight of the bigger picture and turned in on themselves as the center of Christmas.
But Christmas is far from being about self and what self wants. Christmas is about the Christ child who was sent on a mission by God. This was a rescue mission. The mission was this: deliver God’s people from themSELVES. For the child born in a stable and laid in a manger grew up to be the man of sorrows, crushed for the inquities of His people. So Christmas should never be about fulfilling our selfish desires, no matter what form they take. Christmas, always and forever, should be about Jesus Christ, Son of God. Christmas should always bring hope to the hopeless, and we all fit that bill. For without Christ, we all are a hopeless people. Hopelessly searching for happiness, contentment, or simply stuff. Hopelessly headed for eternal destruction in hell.
Yet, God reminds us of the simply profound message of Christmas: “She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21). Now that is worth celebrating!