As I write this post, it's nearly three weeks before Christmas day. For some strange reason, I thought about the days when I was a church pastor, and we went into the neighborhoods, knocking on doors to share the good news of the gospel. Of course, the good news was and is that Christ the Savior has come, and men can be saved from their sin and have eternal life. We went into the neighborhoods spreading this message once a month. December used to be among the most challenging months for us. That's because lots of the people were busily "getting ready for Christmas."Â€ I use that phrase because that's what a number of the people who answered their door gave as the reason that they did not have time to talk to us. Also, we encountered a much higher than normal amount of homes with no one at home. I am certain that some of them were at the malls and shopping centers shopping and getting ready for Christmas. Um, let me think about this. Is Christmas not the day we commemorate the birth of Christ the Savior? And isn't it true that God "gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life"? (John 3:16). Well, it was this exact message we had come into the neighborhoods to share, and since it was during the Yuletide season we were doing this, you would think that people would be even more willing to talk about Christ, but in reality they were not because they were too busy getting ready for Christmas. Christmas is a time of the year that we traditionally do things to fix up our home, shop until we are exhausted, and plan special gatherings. I am not against any of these things. But what do any of them have to do with the real meaning of Christmas? Accordingly, we must be careful to keep these activities in proper perspective. Sometimes, Christians get so caught up in these nonessential activities that they are too physically worn out to really enjoy and savor the real meaning of Christmas. The irony of it all is that some people who come to that special Christmas service at church are so tired from having overwhelmed themselves with preparations for the holiday that they don't have the energy to worship the Lord with any enthusiasm. Or they are so preoccupied with thinking about the things they have yet to do before the big day that their mind is on several things such that God is getting only their divided attention. Moreover, some of them overspend at the mall--getting ready for Christmas--such that they have very little money to bring to the house of God. So, how are you preparing for Christmas? Are you preoccupied with the cares of this world? Are you exercising poor financial stewardship, spending money that the Lord has not blessed you with? Rather, let us make Christ the center of our Christmas, since without Him Christmas would not be. Let us slow down the pace, and worship our Savior the more. Let us read the accounts of His miraculous birth in the Scriptures and recapture the very spirit of Christmas. Let us increase thanksgiving to our God for loving us so much that He gave His only begotten so that whosoever believes on Him should not perish but have everlasting life. And let us share the Savior with the lost. Let me know your thoughts. Frank King
Frank, I can identify with that visiting. I used to attend the church that had the 'Faith' program, and before that 'evangelism explosion', and 'Roman road'. It was amazing, the excuses from both the ones who were supposed to be visiting, and those who were being visited.
Yea, a lot is added to why we are celebrating His coming. Some do not celebrate it at all, saying we are not commanded to. I can respect that. I also see those coming to celebrate His birth, which is why the angels told them. I am glad the account is in there. I too celebrate His coming, as I remember why, and what He did, for me. The God who made it all, coming humbly, in a stable, placed in a feeding trough. To die cursed, because of our sins, upon a Cross, to provide propitiation. God Bless You, those are my thoughts. Thanks Brother. Billy
no black friday shopping here, just staying close to people in the sharing of my time and talents ie baking one of them, getting reading to spend a few days with various family members in 2 states.our church doesnt overdue it with too much busyness this time of year. they are very consicious and sensitive about being good stewards of time.it's a model that serves me and my family well. be blessed my brother you and your family.
I do not get caught up in the shopping thing,rarely ever shop! I simply worship the Lord! Reflect upon the miracle of God in the flesh in the most humblest of settings and the rejoicing and gifts brought and worshipping and the promises and you mentioned John 3:16! I stand with you, Billy and Vet on this! I also think of A Charlie Brown Christmas-a cartoon which also illustrates the true meaning of Christmas! Thanks Brother Frank for sharing of your mission and of the Truth of Christmas! God Bless you and your family abundantly! Dave
If Christians need to be reminded of the true meaning and purpose of Christmas (and we do need reminders), then non-Christians perhaps, might experience the entire season without reflecting on Jesus as God's gift to the world. Jesus told his disciples in John 12:32, "If I be lifted up from the earth, I will draw all men unto me." May we lift up Jesus throughout this Christmas season and all year long, especially to those who have not accepted Jesus Christ.
In His Name,
This year i told my boys that each one gets 1 gift. As i set there at my mom's house with all three sitting with us i've never seen them happier. I praise God for that, just knowing that they know the real reason to be so happy has nothing to do with the gifts, it's all about the one gift, the one that He gives, The Grace that comes from The Love.
Thanks for sharing,