This year is a year of first for my little family. In January, my wife and I welcomed our daughter into the world and considering she was our first child we spent a lot of time readjusting our lives to accommodate this new role we both inherited. However, in looking back over the last year I see that the losses were no where near as great as the things we gained from our daughter being in our lives. She missed last year's festivities and so this year my wife is exceptionally excited to be sharing one of her favorite holidays with our daughter. Though how do you ensure that Christmas is done right?
Before I was saved my family would spend Christmas like most spending money and giving gifts to each other. I used to think that Christmas was more about what you received than what you gave, which was a mentality that stuck with me until around the time I came to know Christ. After that I saw giving as much more crucial to celebrating Christmas than what was received. Many might have seen me jaded at times with Christmas, but the idea of gifts just doesn't appeal to me much anymore because I have been given the ultimate gift in Christ. God sent His only Son to die for me (and others) on a cross for the repayment of sins.
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16 (ESV)
As you gather with you families remember the reason that we celebrate Christmas. It's not about the gifts, the tree, the stockings, or even good ole' St. Nick that we should be spending our time on. However, Christmas is the time of year where we get to be reminded deeply about the sacrifice God made for each one of us, so that He could make us right with Him. We were granted new life that day that echoes and ripples throughout every aspect of our lives each day. So as you spend time with your family remind them and share with them the message of God's grace that was born into this world through His Son and the price that was ultimately paid by Him for us, which was the greatest gift to ever be given.
But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. John 1:12-13 (ESV)