Childhood memories of Christmas
Throughout my youth, Christmas was generally a happy time for me and my family. While my family experienced normal family difficulties, overall we were extremely blessed and had much to be thankful for. I have many wonderful memories of Christmas time as a child and am so thankful for all of the blessings I received.
Although, as a child I didn’t fully understand the true purpose for celebrating Christmas. Christmas was all about receiving gifts as far as I was concerned. It’s not as if my parents didn’t teach me the value of giving, but for some reason I believed that Christmas was all about me.
I remember one specific Christmas when my grandpa and grandma gave me a really cool toy. The only problem was that I already had the exact same toy. Upon opening the generous gift, I told my grandparents that I already had a Lion-O ThunderCat action figure, but thanked them anyways. Yes, I was young and unknowing. Yes, it is probably fairly common for a child to respond that way. However, if I am to be completely honest, I would most likely still think that way if the same thing happened to me this Christmas.
I can’t overstate how this story is not an all encapsulating description of what is wrong with Christmas. All it is, is a memory that reminds me what Christmas used to mean to me. My focus on gift getting as a child doesn’t make me a horrible person, but it does remind me of my self centered nature. Even to this day, I naturally care more about myself than others. It is an extremely difficult challenge to love my neighbor as myself, as I am called (Matthew 22:39).
Christmas is all about Christ
Christmas is a wonderful time of year and it is a great time to demonstrate compassion and kindness through gift giving. Yes, it truly is better to give than to receive (Acts 20:35). That cannot be lost on us during this Christmas season. However, giving and receiving gifts should not be our primary focus. Our primary focus should be on the greatest gift giver of all time. God gives us life and most importantly, He offers eternal life through His son, Jesus Christ. We should remember why He came to earth so long ago.
Jesus came to earth as a baby in a manger. He healed the sick and afflicted. He performed miracles beyond our understanding. He repeatedly demonstrated peace to mankind. He came to the earth to save sinners. He came to testify to the truth. He lived a sinless life. He was completely obedient to His father, even to the point of dying on the cross.
One thing that we shouldn’t overlook this Christmas is that He is with us. Above all, Christmas should remind us that Jesus is with us. “All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us“).” Matthew 1:22-23
It isn’t until you put a single snowflake under a microscope that you see its true beauty. However, the majesty of Jesus can be clearly seen through the lens of the Word of God and through His creation. You just have to be willing to look. May He be with you this Christmas.
Jesus is His Name and Salvation is His Game
There is a God! His name is Jesus. He always has been and always will be. He has no beginning and He has no end. His story has given hope to people around the world for thousands of years. He gave inspiration to flawed men in order to write an infallible book. “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness;” 2 Timothy 3:16 (NASB) The Bible is God’s revealed word and it reveals the hope of the world to millions of people across the world. He is just, righteous, pure, holy, perfect, glorious, and loving. He is the king of kings!
His word tells us that he came to earth in order to seek and save the lost. He entered the world as a baby and left it in sacrifice for the sins of the world. He was 100 percent man and 100 percent God. He lived a sinless life, healed the sick, fed the hungry, gave sight to the blind, and spent time with those whom others would not. He gave hope to those who had none. He obeyed his father, even to the point of dying on the cross.
It’s been over 2,000 years since Jesus came to earth and no one has been able to disprove his life. He is real! His accusers could not keep him from the ultimate sacrifice. The grave could not hold him. He is risen. He has kept his promises. There are more promises yet to fulfill and those he will also keep.
Accept Jesus as your savior this Christmas
You have an opportunity this Christmas to receive the best gift anyone has ever given. Receive God’s love for you and accept Jesus as your savior. You will be rewarded eternally. There is so much hope in having a relationship with the God of the universe. If you are lost then let him find you and allow him to save you. There is great relief in believing and trusting in someone greater than yourself – the God of the universe.
You are not alone. If you cannot hear his voice, then start listening. If you cannot see him, then start looking. His creation demonstrates his existence. Take the gift of a lifetime this Christmas by accepting Jesus as your savior. Give your life to God and let him do his good works in and through you, “…for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.” Romans 10:10
Share the gift with someone else
If you are saved then share this gift of a lifetime with someone else. The faith that you have can be applied in so many ways, but one of the greatest ways to live out your faith is by sharing God’s love with others. Let your light shine this Christmas and give praise to your heavenly father. Allow your friends to see the good work that God has done in your life. “Brethren, my heart’s desire and my prayer to God for them is for their salvation.” Romans 10:1
Christmas is about Christ. Make a decision for Christ this Christmas. It is the gift of a lifetime. Have you already received Jesus as your savior? If not, will you accept the gift of eternal life this Christmas?