This month, I am slightly ashamed to admit, I have probably watched over 15 Hallmark Christmas movies and loved pretty much all of them. At this point, I can guess the plot, and pinpoint reoccurring themes like: a gingerbread house is made, there is a tree lighting ceremony, cookies are baked, trees are decorated, it snows, a man and woman fall in love. Half the time, one of the protagonists is from the city, or a small town person and moved to the city, and falls in love with the small town again. Somewhere in the story there is a misunderstood overheard convo and eventually reconciliation between the love birds. Then one is offered a work promotion or new job but turns it down to stay at their small town with their newfound love where some home they have mystically found new employment. And yet knowing this, I get sucked in every time.
It’s that feeling of tradition and familiarity. The cozy feeling of being around a caring family that make us feel warm and cozy during the holidays. I love tradition and I love being around family. It seems a new tradition in my own home is baking a batch of 24 cookies and surely enough that batch will disappear within the hour, it seems my husband and I lack self control when it comes to cookies. I look forward to this next year.
Additionally, in the spirit of tradition we give gift on Christmas Day. We love to spend time with family, see their faces light up as we see them open the gift we have gotten them. The gift we painstakingly gave so much thought to. The gift we questioned over and over again to make sure it was perfect. And we find joy in that moment.
However, there is another moment we should find joy in, and that is the one perfect gift that than ever be given but can only be given by Him, by Christ.
The real reason we celebrate Christmas is to celebrate the perfect gift given to us by God Himself.
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”
John 3:16 ESV
What better gift can we receive that the gift of salvation? God sent his only son to live a perfect life on earth and ultimately die to pay for our sins.
Now, this plan was a very elaborate one when you think about it. Jesus, being King and having rule and dominion over legions of angels come into the world, born of a virgin pure and clean of any sin, came to die for ours sins.
“She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.””
Matthew 1:21 ESV
He was 100% God and 100% man. He lived the perfect life we cannot live and died a death that we deserve so that we can be called sons of God. Wow!
That is what we should meditate on this Christmas and every Christmas. And I say this mainly as a personal self-examination to myself.
We have a wonderful counselor and everlasting father and that should bring us hope this holiday season. Not the usual traditions, as heartwarming as they may be, our hearts should be on Christ. Our hearts should be filled with gratefulness for the precious gift we have received.
“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
Isaiah 9:6 ESV
This Christmas I want to keep my mind set on that one precious gift, the gift better and any material earthly gift, the perfect gift given by God; Christ. May Christ be the center of all our Christmases and even more so our entire lives.
My pastor preached a sermon this past Sunday about preparing room in the Inn of our lives for Christ. Feel free to give it a listen and rejoice in the gift given to you and examine yourself and I will too and see if we are making room for Christ in our Inn.
Merry Christmas, everyone!
“Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!”
2 Corinthians 9:15 ESV
Here are a few articles I found in preparation for this post that I think are of great blessing during this holiday season.
SDG: “Soli Deo Gloria”