Merry Christmas! To some, this phrase will sound odd and out of place. To others it will be a refreshing greeting that symbolizes our celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ. It is a holiday (Holy day) that is named after Jesus’ title. Please note that in the headline above I have capitalized “CHRIST” emphasizing after whom Christmas has been named. Somehow, it appears to me that some folks have lost the meaning. Maybe they never got it in the first place.
All one has to do is look around. Our decorations tell us what emphasis we have placed on the message of Christmas. Spend a couple minutes shopping for decorations in your local home improvement store, Target, or perhaps Kmart….. lots of people buy their ornaments there. Maybe that’s where you get yours.
Look closely at them. What do you see? Do you see a celebration of the birth of Christ in them? I’ll bet you don’t. What in the world do snowmen, teddy bears, a “Chrismoose”, or an inflatable Grinch have to do with CHRISTmas? And really, what does a fat guy in red suit say about Christ anyway? I suggest the answer to these questions is “nothing at all.” Even our Christmas cards have been turned into mushy “Wishing you the warmest of seasons” so as to not offend anyone. I get nauseous thinking about it. If you want someone to have the warmest of seasons maybe a pair of tickets to Hawaii tucked into that card would make a great gift.
Sadly, in a world that has been attuned to either ignore or despise religion in general (and in particular Christianity) we have lost one of two good opportunities during the year (Easter is the other) to bear our witness to Christ and his mission to restore a proper relationship between a fallen mankind and our Creator. How we decorate, select cards, and greet one another will ultimately speak volumes about our relationship with Him.
I suggest that Christians should turn Christmas back into a unique opportunity for witnessing to Christ’s work in our lives and our gratefulness for his sacrifice. All you have to do is say “Merry Christmas” to the clerk at the store. Some will receive it with gladness. Some will not. Some might even get curious about our faith. What an opportunity that would be! How the person receives the greeting is up to them. The Bible says this in 2Cor 2:15,16: “For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. To the one we are the smell of death; to the other, the fragrance of life.” (NIV84). Nevertheless, our task is to witness to Christ’s message. Select your Christmas cards carefully to present a proper message.
I know…. they can be hard to find… I get it. However, most Christian stores will have them. Perhaps a manger scene in the front yard instead of the Grinch will be able to convey the meaning of the “reason for the season.” Sadly, these too are getting harder to find. But, just because it’s hard doesn’t mean it’s not worth doing. Christian stores will probably have what you need. If not, I direct you to the World Wide Web… there’s lots of stuff for sale there too!
Therefore, dear reader, I encourage you to make the most of this Christmas time to witness Christ’s salvation to a lost and fallen world. They desperately need it. Please choose carefully how you send the message…..
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©2015 Casey O.Hooper