The holiday season is upon us. As we begin to put up the Christmas tree, shop for our loved ones, and begin preparing for our holiday feasts, let us not forget the true meaning of this season. With the coronavirus pandemic creating a void in our hearts and lives, we may feel persuaded to fill feelings of emptiness by going above and beyond with our celebrations. Perhaps you may be on the completely opposite end of the spectrum. Maybe, due to the pandemic, you don’t even feel like celebrating Christmas this year.
However you feel about celebrating the good and faithful holiday this year, I challenge you to one thing in mind: it is time to put the “Christ” back in Christmas.
Over the years, consumerism and capitalism have normalized the erasure of the true meaning of Christmas.
Christmas is not about getting a multitude of expensive presents. Christmas is not about decorating your house so that it looks brighter than your neighbour’s home. It is not about hosting the fanciest dinner party so that you can post about it later on Instagram. It is not about Santa Claus.
In short, Christmas is about hope, love, generosity, and thoughtfulness. It is about the arrival of salvation and liberation from sin, shame, and suffering.
Christmas is a celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ.
This is why the name “Christ” is in the name Christmas. It is literally all about him.
The story of Jesus can be found in Luke 2:4-19
4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.Luke 2: 4-7 (NIV)
The birth of Jesus provided hope to a nation of people who were suffering from the pain of sin that was embedded in the world. Death, cruelty, poverty, lying, cheating, stealing. Jesus was born to deliver, save, and protect all people from these trials. When we celebrate Christmas, we remember Jesus’ sacrifices and thank God for allowing Jesus to be brought into the world.
There is nothing wrong with purchasing presents for your loved ones.
In fact, the three wise men who visited Jesus on the day of his birth brought presents for him. God gifted the world with His only begotten son, Jesus, for the sake of our souls. The generosity and thoughtfulness that comes in giving gifts is part of the celebration of Christmas.
However, we can lose sight of the beauty and meaning of Christmas when we get wrapped up in prioritizing the presents, decorations, and material things more than the meaning of the holiday.
The story of Jesus’ birth provides us with hope in today’s day and age.
Jesus’ birth represents hope and faith – two things that many of us need today. With the pandemic creating such fear and uncertainty in our lives, let us utilize this holiday season to create peace and joy in our lives. Christmas is a time for celebration!
Consider spreading the joy this holiday season by giving back to your community. Perhaps you’d like to donate old clothes, monetary gifts, or toys to hospitals or charities (given they are accepting items). Maybe you know of a family friend who is struggling to feed their family. This is the time to purchase an extra turkey or ham for them. You’d be surprised at how therapeutic generosity is.
What is your favourite part of the Christmas season?
Drop your comments and thoughts below! We’d love to hear from you.
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