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19 December, 2009

What Has Become of Christmas?

Christmas is supposed to be the greatest time of the year; It is supposed to be the time when all Christians rejoice because it is the time we use to celebrate Jesus coming to Earth through the Virgin Birth. Something has happened, if not in the world, at least in me! I have begun to seriously wonder just what we are doing in this season. Why we even bother with the traditions we have.
We exchange gifts. My understanding of this tradition is with the 3 Magi who brought gifts to the Christ Child in Bethlehem. We are to give gifts to one another in the same fashion, we are to give them to Jesus, but, because He isn't here physically, we exchange with each other in lieu of Jesus. The problem is that people are not giving in the same fashion, they (or should I say "we" ) are rather looking to get more than we had before, trying to find a way to justify spending more than we can truly afford; All in the name of Christmas! If we are to be giving "to Jesus" and in the same fashion, why not give them in the fashion that Jesus taught? Namely: Giving of ourselves, not our pocketbooks. Not attempting to purchase "things", but, rather to build relationships! Jesus came to bring us back to The Father, to rebuild the relationship that was destroyed by sin in the Garden of Eden. Why not take this season to reflect and rebuild what may have been broken, or even lost? What better gift could one receive than to know that they are loved enough to be called back to a broken or lost relationship?! It's not that I have a problem with the giving of gifts; It's what has become of it! We are looking more for what we can get rather than what we can give; Almost as though we are trying more to impress someone, or make a point rather than showing our love for them!

Then I look at the houses; They are decorated and "dressed to the nines", lights enough to be seen by a satellite, all sorts of plastics filling the yard, that are tied down in such a way that the Mailman trips on his way through to the box! Why?
What part of this is celebrating Christmas? Which part says: "Christ has come! Celebrate with my family and I"," Christ is here and we want to tell the world!"? All these decorations are ,seemingly, pointing toward the house and not Christ and certainly not His Miraculous Birth! I have to admire the creativity they use when putting their displays together, but, that still does not answer what does it have to do with His Birth? Why are we doing these things at this time of year? If all we want to do is point at our own creativity, why not do it during Halloween? How about New Year's? The only problem there is that a large number of people will probably be too drunk to notice just what has been done to a house, but, still why are we pointing at ourselves during a time when we should be pointing at Him and the Tremendous gift we were given? Thoughts tend to go back to us looking more for ourselves than others. Jesus taught us to "deny yourself, take up your cross, and follow me." How so we deny ourselves and still find a way to creatively decorate our houses?

What is Christmas really about? I know the stories, and certainly The story in the Bible; That's not the question. The question is: What does Christmas mean to you? Why do you do the things you do? Can you glorify God in it? Can you show people about Jesus in these traditions? O.K. , so there is more than ONE question, but, really, I think there is just one question it has a lot to it.
When we are buying these gifts, are they to show the love we have? Are we going to have that same feeling for them after Christmas, or are we going to go right back to the same old ways? Have we really given them anything, or have we just satiated their frustration at the lack of a relationship?

What has happened to Christmas in Your heart?