It’s easy to get so consumed with the traditions of the Christmas season we forget the Reason we celebrate in the first place.
Oh, the traditions are fun. So much fun. There’s little that excites me more than digging out all the Christmas decor and once again hanging the lights and Christmas ornaments we’ve collected through the years. We love riding through different parts of town to see the Christmas lights. Such sweet memories! That ‘thrill of hope’ the Christmas song describes is palpable throughout the season.
I wonder, though…do we ever slow down enough to recognize the Reason for it?
I know we think we do…but do we really?
Sometimes it’s even easier to skip the celebration altogether, because…well…life. It’s so overwhelming we don’t much feel like celebrating anything at all.
Regardless the reason, when we’re so focused on everything else, it’s much too easy to forget, or completely miss, the blessing — the hope — of the Christmas message.
You see, this holiday season is no regular celebration. It’s no ordinary birthday. It’s not about sending cute Christmas cards with our latest family pics, or the getting of gifts, or the umpteen Christmas parties and plays and concerts. Those are all incredibly fun, and appropriate, but we know something that’s far too valuable to overlook:
Christmas is the very heart of the Gospel message.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16
For the believer, Christmas is a time to remember (and share) that God created man in His image
“And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.” Genesis 2:7
Yet man rejected Him. (Genesis 2 and 3)
Then, because He is good, God sent His Son — born of a virgin in a barn in Bethlehem (Luke 2) — to rebuild that relationship.
Jesus was born to die so that you and I could live.
And He didn’t make this sacrifice and then force it onto all mankind — He gave us a choice. A free gift. No strings attached.
So, as we celebrate Christmas this weekend with friends and family, let’s remember — were it not for the cross, there would be no Christmas.
*Crossposted on Substack*