The one thing I get asked most often around this time of year as a Pastor is, “Is it ok to enjoy Christmas like most people do? Isn’t having a tree and giving gifts a secular thing and we should be avoiding it?”
My answer is always the same – Of course it’s ok to enjoy Christmas in this manner. Having a tree that is decorated is in no way distasteful to God. Now it could be, let’s say, if you decorated it with money and worshiped the tree as your God. Then you have a real problem. But putting up a tree and decorating it with lights and ornaments and maybe putting a star on top to remind yourself about that bright star that led the wise men to Jesus is perfectly fine.
There is also nothing wrong with giving gifts as long as your heart and motivation are in the right place. The giving of the gifts is an act of celebration that our Lord Jesus was born as our Savior. The gifts are not meant to show others how much money we make, or to spoil our kids so that they will love us. Remember that the wise men brought gifts to the baby Jesus to celebrate His birth, and we are simply doing the same.
Christmas is such a wonderful time of love and celebration and family and gratefulness. It is a shame that it only comes but once a year. It is also a further shame that the vast majority of people only step foot in a church on Christmas and Easter. How many friends do you have that would be happy only seeing you twice and year, and only then because you felt like you had to? They would not be friends for long.
Also at this time of year, I absolutely love the music. I love to pull out my Amy Grant Christmas album and listen to her angelic voice sing praises to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Hark the Hearld Angel Sing is one of my favorites, right up there with Silent Night.
“Silent night, holy night,
all is calm, all is bright,
round yon virgin, Mother and Child,
Holy Infant, so tender and mild,
sleep in Heavenly peace, sleep in Heavenly peace.”
How powerful and yet calming those words ring in the ears of God’s children.
Finally, please take the time to watch A Charlie Brown Christmas. Linus takes the time to take the stage and tell us exactly what Christmas is all about when Charlie Brown gets frustrated.
Here is Linus now, just in time to remind us what Christmas is all about:
So this Christmas season, let yourself enjoy Jesus birth. Embrace the fact that Jesus was born to die for you and for me and for all people who accept Him as Savior.
“Glory to God in the highest, and on Earth, peace, good will toward men. That’s what Christmas is all about Charlie Brown!”
With Great Love and Peace this Birthday Celebration of our Savior,
Pastor Brad Komgenick