Luke 2:4-7 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. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 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.
It truly is the most miraculous, wonderful time of the year! Think about it, Peeps! A miracle occurred some 2000 years ago when Jesus came to earth as a mere human babe. He was fully God, yet fully man, and He did this just for you and for me! There is no wonder that we are filled with so much excitement around the season. Those of us who feel the true excitement recognize that the true reason for the season is not just the birth of the Christ child, but the fact that Christ went to the cross so that we may have everlasting life with the Father. This truly is the greatest act of love ever known. We should definitely celebrate BIG!
Last night, we drove to Columbia, MS, to see their Main Street light display. We went a couple of years ago, and they do a pretty nice job with the lights. A friend said that they had a Santa on a rooftop and a live nativity this year. Well, that was something we needed to see! It was truly a wonderful experience. Sure enough, old Santa was on a rooftop of one of the businesses wishing everyone a Merry Christmas, but there was a little twist to the tale he told. He credited the true reason for the celebration to the birth of the Savior. The rooftop skit was followed by a herald of angels down the street on another rooftop. After a bit, angels carrying candles walked down the center of the street. The angels were followed by Mary and Joseph who walked to a stable set up near the courthouse. Next, came the shepherds who were carrying live baby goats that were bleating so sweetly. Then came lots of angels who were followed by soldiers, flag bearers, and wise men carrying their gifts. The whole processional was spectacular and breathtaking.
Afterwards, I was thinking about the state of this world. Here we are in the middle of a pandemic, election battle, and in a world full of chaos, but none of that really mattered at that moment. For a brief few moments in time, people gathered around, and Santa directed them to the cross. How amazing is that? I have to give Columbia big cheers for not only setting up a beautiful light display but also for reminding their citizens and visitors of the true meaning of Christmas.
If you aren’t feeling all Christmassy this year, I can understand. It’s been a tough year. It may have been the toughest year many of us have endured in our lifetimes. Do you want to know what I have found during this horribly, awful, terrible year? My faith in Christ has grown stronger every single day, and because of this, I want to celebrate Christmas bigger than ever. I’m not talking about the gifts and goodies, y’all. I’m talking about the Gift and the goodness of Christ. Christ came to earth as a baby boy. He came so that He may feel what you and I feel. He came to save a lost and dying world. He came to die so that we may live! That is worth celebrating every single day of every year, but especially this year! If you are missing that Christmas spirit, pull up a chair or better yet, get down on your knees, and have a little talk with the Savior. That is where you will find joy everlasting!
It is Sunday morning, mid December. Sunday has always been my favorite day of the week. Sundays mean church and family. We gather at our church with our faith family and sing praises, we worship our Lord and Savior, and then we gather around the table with our family for a big Sunday meal. COVID has changed a lot of things, but one thing that it SHOULD NOT change is our need to worship our Lord and Savior. I’ve got to say that I get a bit frustrated when I see people shopping in large crowds, going to restaurants to eat, and traveling all over while our churches are sitting empty. If we are able to go into those crowds, restaurants, and stores, then I’m pretty sure that we are able to sit in the house of the Lord and worship our Savior especially during this season. If you are sick or at high risk, by all means, please stay home! But if you are able to shop, dine out, and get into the hustle and bustle of the crowds, get up and go to church this morning. You will be so glad that you did. Do it safely. Wear a mask. I won’t argue this point. Masks do work. We’ve used them in medicine for many years to prevent spread of germs from the caregiver to the patient. Sit with your nuclear family. Spread out. If we can do this in restaurants and stores, we can do this in church. We can worship safely, but my friends, we can NOT stop worshipping!
‘Tis the season of peace, love, joy, new life, and the beginning of everlasting life. There is so much to celebrate! We can’t fill up the shops and dining establishments, and leave the house of the Lord empty. It just doesn’t make good sense. ‘Tis the season to celebrate Christ! If you are able, I challenge you to get up, get dressed, and go to your house of worship this morning. Our Savior deserves our time and our presence! I love you, and so does Jesus! ‘Tis the season to show our love for others and for Christ! ‘Tis the season to celebrate the Reason!