Merry Christmas, or if you insist, Happy Holidays. I know it is politically correct to wish people Happy Holidays, but it is my belief that you will get more joy out of celebrating Christmas than other holidays of the season.
Yes there were plenty of pagan holidays at this time of year, and people have made good arguments that Christmas was set on the calendar to replace one of the pagan holidays. We also have some secular celebrations that compete with Christmas, but a sincere celebration of Christmas has the potential of more joy than any other celebration.
You ask, “How can there be joy in a holiday season when we are running around buying presents and attending social functions, school programs and endless parties?” If such activities are stressing you out, perhaps you need to evaluate your priorities. What is important at Christmas?
The reason for having Christmas is to celebrate the birth of Jesus. It is not important that we may be celebrating on the wrong date. What is important is that we are celebrating that God came to Earth to live with us. One of the names of Jesus is Emmanuel, or God With US. God himself came to Earth to live with us as a man. God is no longer distant and unapproachable. He lived with men in the first century, and he lives today with us as a spirit. As a Christian, I am called to have a personal relationship with Jesus.
If you go to church during the Christmas season you will be told the story of his humble birth. You will learn that the King of Kings and Lord of Lords was born in a barn full of animals. I hope you will be inspired to go to church and learn how much God loves you. You will learn that Jesus loves you so much he died for you and that he wants you to believe in him so you can spend eternity with him in heaven.
Of course Santa Claus, Rudolph the Reindeer, and many other secular symbols are trying to compete with Jesus at Christmas. They may bring some fun to the season, but please remember to put Jesus first.
There is nothing wrong with having some fun, but be responsible. Don’t get drunk. Try to spend some time with your family. Don’t spend a lot of money on extravagant gifts to impress people, but rather give simple, gifts to show your love. Focus your celebration on the fact that we have received the best give of all from God. We have been given Jesus. also known as Emanuel, God With Us.
If you accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior, you will have the rest of you life making this relationship deeper and more personal. I will testify that Jesus is the best friend you can hope for. Then after death, you will live with him for all eternity, sharing his glory.
Reynold is an author of Christian fiction. Visit his webpage at http://www.ReynoldConger.com. (One of the pages features pictures and articles about bees.)